The indoor training platform, FulGaz, has joined The IRONMAN Group. Announced on Friday last week, this is a big deal for the Australian tech start-up that is now part of a major global sporting company.
– Click the link below to watch RIDE Media’s interview with FulGaz founder, Mike Clucas. –
“The big news is: FulGaz is now part of The IRONMAN Group,” says the founder of the cycling app, Mike Clucas, early in a long interview about the acquisition by the global sporting giant of the Australian tech start-up.
According to the official release, issued shortly before I spoke with Mike for our interview, the deal “marks the first major digital technology acquisition for The IRONMAN Group, offering new opportunities for athlete preparation, virtual racing, and digital event experiences”.
It’s big news what has been a relatively small Australian cycling brand and there is enormous scope to create training platforms that utilise the tech developed by Clucas and co, while also continuing to provide FulGaz subscribers with the real-world imagery and associated ride data for indoor training.
The IRONMAN Group has firmly established itself as major player in the global sports industry. It proudly boasts that it is “the world’s largest operator of mass participation sporting events”. And, in the release about the FulGaz deal, it states how the aim is to “expand its offerings to the quickly evolving worldwide connected fitness community”.
In the coming months we’ll learn a lot more about what the next steps are but if you want to find out more from Clucas himself, but sure to watch the 25-minute interview that was recently uploaded to RIDE Media’s YouTube channel. One key point, however, is that those who are already using the FulGaz platform will still be able to ride the way they have been doing since the inception of the app years ago.
There will be refinements to the tech side of things and, of course, a wealth of opportunities to film rides around the world that are part of the considerable portfolio of The IRONMAN Group.
As well as owning the IRONMAN triathlon series, the company is responsible for a wide range of other events including the IRONMAN Virtual Racing Series, Rock ’n’ Roll Running Series, The Sun-Herald City2Surf, MTB races such as the Absa Cape Epic, as well as the mass participation road cycling series, Haute Route.
Clucas expanded on his explanation of the deal by reiterating that FulGaz, although created as a cycling company has benefits for athletes of all sports. “You might be saying, ‘Well, why is a cycling app part of a triathlon company… that doesn’t make sense’, but it does,” says Clucas. “It’s because [The IRONMAN Group] is the world’s largest mass-participation events company, so it gives us resources that we didn’t have before.
“We have already previous just relied on subscriber growth,” he says, before explaining some of the basic benefits that come with being part of a larger sporting brand.
“FulGaz is now solely owned by IRONMAN… but,” adds Clucas, “I’ve got a very vested interest in hanging around and making things grow. It’s not what you would describe as a ‘sell-out deal’.”
For now, it’s early days and it will certainly be interesting to watch the continued evolution of FulGaz now that it’s part of a much larger parent company.
– By Rob Arnold