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For the past two years SAP has been the event sponsor of the CHIO Aachen („World Equestrian Festival“), Germany, an event which is essentially the Champions League for equestrian sport. Due to the magnitude of the event it was thus no surprise that fans came from near and far to enjoy the various disciplines on offer including show jumping, dressage, eventing and four-in-hand driving and vaulting. All those present were able to enhance their experience thanks to new technology in the mobile space from SAP.

In spite of SAP being the event sponsor of CHIO (Concours Hippique International Officiel) Aachen for the past year, very few even now would associate equestrian sport with software. However, for the first time in an equestrian context, SAP technology offered fans an entirely new experience.  SAP demonstrated its widespread innovative capabilities by allowing visitors and fans to use their smartphones or Tablet PC’s to obtain comprehensive information about the event and each of the disciplines, as well as actively engage in the assessments of the riders in the competitions.

At the CHIO Aachen 2013, in association with Aachener Reitturnier GmbH, SAP offered two fascinating mobile fan apps that allowed admirers of the sport, both in Aachen and at home, to test their knowledge, as well as actively influence the proceedings as judges. By using various innovative elements, such as SAP Gamification Platform, and SAP HANA Cloud, SAP was able to pinpoint its ingenuity in equestrian sport by developing “real-time infotainment” for the first time.

  1. Online Quiz
    Visitors on-site and fans online were able to put their knowledge of the CHIO Aachen to the test by attempting a variety of challenging questions. Questions were updated on a daily basis to keep the app stimulating and to allow visitors to continually develop on their accomplishments.  Individual results were calculated using points for correct answers and quick responses, before being updated in real-time on the daily ranking.

  2. Online Fan-Evaluation of the Dressage Freestyle Competitions
    For the first time ever, the CHIO spectators on-site had the opportunity to rate the competitors and publish their scores at the same time as the judges. The audience and official rankings were displayed side-by-side and provided for an exhilarating commentary. The feature proved to be very popular generating a great deal of fan attention and lively discussion amongst experts.

Picture: Stephan Daub

The innovations in the CHIO Aachen App by SAP provide a fantastic mobile experience for all fans on-site and remote, enabling exciting daily infotainment with tons of interesting information about the event and each of the disciplines, including the opportunity to generate real-time analysis of numerous co-players of various standards. Furthermore, SAP provides a unique opportunity for fans to vote alongside the judges in two of the most prestigious dressage competitions worldwide and engage closely with experts and other fans simultaneously to the action in the stadium. The Online Fan-Evaluation of the Dressage Freestyle Competition is a perfect example of what a transformative force mobile can be. By using sponsorships in this way we will not only raise the awareness of SAP, but also  show what else the SAP product portfolio has to offer.

Following the fantastic reception of the CHIO Aachen Apps, I feel we should replicate this success at other competitions in the future.

This is an example of us moving a step closer to turning more and more consumers into passionate fans of the SAP brand.
By focusing on the equestrian passion of the fans we were able to connect with them directly and to establish SAP as a company that improves the event experience by providing technological tools and mediums to gain a deeper insight („beyond the numbers“), to get closer to the action and to create a more meaningful relationship between the athletes and the fans.

“As event organizers we would like to offer fans and visitors at the CHIO Aachen a unique experience”, said Michael Mronz, chief executive of the Aachener Reitturnier GmbH. “The cooperation with SAP bodes perfectly with our initiative ‘Digital CHIO’ by allowing us to be perceived as an innovative event provider in the field of digital marketing and mobile applications, and by increasingly incorporating our fans into the action.”

For further information please also check out this article (German only)