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Online system makes coaches stars away from the game

The founder of an online hub that connects coaches and players wants to take care of the issues trainers face off the court or field.

Ian Bishop is a veteran tennis player and coach in the UK and New Zealand, but found came up with Coachseek when he found it increasingly difficult to manage the business aspects of the job, like appointments, cancellations, payments, publicity and recommendations.

“It was getting in the way of me enjoying my coaching,” Bishop says. “I started on the journey of seeing if it was just me or whether it was a common story across sports.”

Interviews with coaches and parents revealed there was interest in the service and Bishop sees applications for it across individual and team sports.

“Parents I spoke to wanted to know when coaches were available and what their prices were. It’s quite difficult at the moment to find that information.”

He says the most similar service he found online was the Find a Coach section on Tennis New Zealand’s website, but wanted to offer the chance for coaches to promote themselves and manage their business as well.

“I got the idea looking at models in other industries and thought, ‘why haven’t they done this in sport?'”

Bishop has teamed with chief technology officer Matthew Skilton and chief marketing officer Shaun Fitzmaurice to develop Coachseek and all three are currently participating in the second round of the Wellington Lightning Lab accelerator. 

Amanda Sachtleben is an Auckland writer and social media type, who's also Idealog's former tech editor and business journalist.

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