Living Entrepreneurship Blog / Babson Entrepreneurs

2018 SVP Startup Profile: Sports Riot

Hockey Pro Emily Cronin MBA’19, co-founder of SportsRiot

Emily Cronin MBA ‘19

Tell me a little bit about yourself and your company SportsRiot?
At SportsRiot we create sportscentric festival experiences in unique destinations for adults looking to connect with others and celebrate a shared love of sports.

I am a part of the two year MBA program here at Babson. My background in in higher education managing events for senior executives. I’ve played sports throughout my entire life. My company, SportsRiot, combines my understanding of the events industry with a passion for sports.

What is the story behind Sports Riot?
I played ice hockey in college, and once graduating, I was in search for ways to keep active and stay involved in the sports field. I heard about these pond hockey tournaments for adults, but noticed that most of them have limited spots for women teams. I tried reaching out to the organizer of this event three years in a row and never got a response. Finally, I decided to play my brother’s team and I had a blast (even though I got frostbite on my toes, hence the name Frostbite Face-Off). On our way back home, my brother and I realized we should recreate this experience for not only ice hockey, but for a wide array of sports.

What is the most valuable thing you’ve gained from the Summer Venture Program?
There are a lot of things I’ve gained from the Summer Venture Program (SVP). Most importantly being the connections and network I’ve built in SVP. I have met people who I would have never had the opportunity to connect with through SVP. To put it in perspective, I’ve made more contacts in the past week than I have in the past 2.5 years. I love that SVP gave me dedicated space and time to truly grow my venture. Plus, at SVP I’ve had the opportunity to apply the lessons I’ve learned and see the results.

What’s been a milestone/accomplishment you’ve made since the Summer Venture Program started?
I’ve made a lot of progress in branding and market research this past summer. I’ve finally honed in on who to build a brand and make sure that brand in consistent with our values. We’ve validated the assumptions we’ve had about our customer market by by working with the library and distributing surveys. This also helped us figure out our demand

What’s been an obstacle/surprise you’ve faced?
I kind of worked backwards during SVP. I came into this summer with a service (Frostbite Face-Off) and not the umbrella company. This made branding really difficult for us to manage, since we had yet to develop a vision for our company. We have figured out these challenges, addressed them, and now overcame them this summer. This took a lot of time but we did it.

What is your favorite memory or moment from the Summer Venture Program?
I thought it was pretty hilarious when David called out one of my peers for always wearing t-shirts. I’ve loved joking around this summer.

If you could run any company in the world, existing or not, what would it be and why?
I would love to run a travel company like Trip Advisor. I’ve always been passionate about visiting new places and seeing all kinds of cultures.

What is your go-to restaurant around Workbar?
I bring my own lunch a lot, but when I don’t I like going to Pret A Manger, they have some fresh salads and sandwiches!

Any tips for aspiring entrepreneurs that you want to share?
Be persistent. You probably will face a lot of setbacks, and people might not always be as confident in your business model as you are. You need to build the mental strength; it can get you through the tough times.

Check out SportsRiot and our startups at this year’s Summer Venture Showcase. Register now!