As part of a large-scale marketing partnership, the Philadelphia 76ers and Kimball Office, one of America’s most respected manufacturers of contract office furniture, have created an Innovation Lab located at the 76ers Training Complex in Camden, N.J.
The Sixers Innovation Lab, aimed at cultivating an entrepreneurial spirit while attracting and retaining new business talent in the region, hired a local entrepreneur, one of national repute, to help fulfill its mission.
Malvern resident Seth Berger – a Penn graduate renowned for creating AND1, the basketball footwear and clothing company – is the new lab’s managing director.
“Seth brings an unmatched entrepreneurial perspective, passion, and seasoned business acumen to our organization,” said 76ers CEO Scott O’Neil. “It’s our responsibility and the goal of the Sixers Innovation Lab Crafted by Kimball to provide the industry’s future business leaders with the most accelerated and individualized opportunities to grow.
“Seth’s journey – from the University of Pennsylvania and Wharton School of Business, to a driven entrepreneur, to a successful founder and CEO of a globally recognized brand – embodies the perfect mixture of focus, grit, vision, and determination to inspire young entrepreneurs.”
The Sixers Innovation Lab will provide office space and essential services for start-up businesses to foster innovation and lay the groundwork for future success, while tapping into the vast network of resources that the Philadelphia 76ers management team, ownership, and partners can provide.
“The speed, flexibility, and opportunity for financial support we are offering at the Sixers Innovation Lab Crafted by Kimball is incredibly unique in the incubator space,” said Berger. “(76ers) owners Josh Harris and David Blitzer and CEO Scott O’Neil are really forward-thinking about ways they can use the Sixers to build businesses – and not just businesses that are directly related to sports.”
“This team and this organization is so connected in so many different industries that we can help many businesses grow.”
The 48-year-old Berger, who coaches the boys basketball team at The Westtown School in West Chester, made a mint when he cashed out of AND1 in 2005, when annual sales had risen to $250 million.
“Sports owners and executives are some of the most well-connected people in any industry,” he said. “We can get to anyone in business we need. Because of that, we can really help businesses grow.”
The Sixers Innovation Lab recently announced that Monster Roster will be its first participant.
Monster Roster is a daily fantasy sports lineup recommender that combines a unique process and powerful algorithm to help fantasy sports users build superior lineups with proven results.
“Working with Seth Berger and the Philadelphia 76ers is an incredible opportunity,” said Dylan Elder, founder and CEO of Monster Roster. “The Sixers Innovation Lab Crafted by Kimball is allowing me to grow my company at a pace I never would have imagined. I have access to such incredible resources, and the individual attention I receive from Seth and other industry leaders on a daily basis has been an incredible learning experience for me and invaluable for the company.
“Every day I am challenged and inspired to think bigger; I am confident the entire industry will be talking about Monster Roster in the months ahead.”