SportsEngine, Inc., an NBC Sports Group company, and the leading provider of Sport Relationship Management software, announced today that Brian Bell has been promoted from President to CEO. Bell will take the leadership helm from Justin Kaufenberg, who will exit the business after co-founding the company more than 10 years ago.
Bell, a veteran of the tech and SaaS industry, joined SportsEngine in 2015 as Chief Revenue Officer, and was elevated to President in 2018. Bell, working closely with the leadership team, helped drive record year-over-year growth and launch several market-expanding products, including its enterprise-grade Sport Relationship Management platform for the company last year.
Since becoming part of NBC Sports Group in 2016, SportsEngine has experienced record growth three years running. In that period, the company added more than 200 new employees, has more than tripled active customers and now serves more than 45,000 unique sports organizations and 35 million monthly unique platform users, making SportsEngine the largest integrated amateur sports technology platform in the world. SportsEngine also launched SE Safety, a new division dedicated to protecting youth athletes off the field of play. SE Safety is now the largest youth sports background screening and abuse prevention training company in the market.
“Today’s pace of change is exponential, and the entire SportsEngine team has exceeded our expectations these last three years,” said Pete Bevacqua, President of NBC Sports Group. “Our commitment to youth sports, to healthy and active young people, and to the Olympic movement is absolute. You can be sure that NBC is behind the entire SportsEngine organization with more resources and commitment to growth and innovation than ever.”
As part of the transition, the company also announced several additional management changes, including the promotion of Brett MacKinnon to SVP of Sales and Jody Vogelaar to SVP of Marketing & Content. Lee Zukor was previously promoted to SVP of Product & Development. SportsEngine Co-founders, Carson Kipfer and Greg Blasko, along with SVP of HR, Anna Klombies, will also be leaving the company to pursue personal interests.
“For more than 10 years, we’ve been proud to invest our energy in the youth sports market, which has given all of us so much,” said Kipfer. “Joining forces with NBC Sports in 2016 ensured that SportsEngine would be a forever company, and it is impossible to imagine a better situation. We are incredibly proud to have been a member of their team, and a core part of their decades-long strategic vision.”
“To be able to step away, knowing that the company is growing faster than ever, with better products than ever, with stronger leadership than ever, is really unique,” noted Kaufenberg. “Brian Bell and the rest of the leadership team are exceptional and they are just getting started. We are grateful to have had the opportunity to lead SportsEngine through the first chapter of its story.”
Prior to SportsEngine, Bell held several executive positions at technology companies, including President/COO at Code42, Executive Director, Americas Sales at Dell, and VP of Worldwide Sales at Compellent Technologies. He holds a BS from the United States Air Force Academy, where he served as an Officer and F-16 Pilot, and holds an MS degree from the University of Illinois. Brian is an active advisor and board member in the Minneapolis tech community.
About SportsEngine, Inc.
Helping the world play smarter and live more, SportsEngine, Inc., an NBC Sports Group company, is the leading provider of sport relationship management software serving millions of coaches, parents, athletes, clubs, leagues, governing bodies, and associations. SportsEngine helps sports organizations around the globe reduce the time they spend on administrative tasks, and enables them to focus more on developing their athletes, providing safe experiences, and furthering the love of sport. Leagues and governing bodies across the country use National Center for Safety Initiatives (NCSI), a SportsEngine, Inc. subsidiary, to manage their background checks and safety programs. Learn more at: www.sportsengine.com/corp, facebook.com/sportsengine; or twitter.com/@sportsengine.