The new IOC Athlete365 Business Accelerator

What can I do next? How can I develop a new business idea? The Athlete365 Business Accelerator will help athletes find an answer to these questions and more.

Career transition for athletes can sometimes be a critical moment, as daily life after competition can change considerably. But this period can also offer new exciting challenges. Thanks to ideas and skills acquired during their sports career, such as leadership, perseverance, resilience and team spirit, elite athletes have potential to become successful innovators and entrepreneurs.

The concept of the programme, developed in close collaboration with the World Olympians Association, will form the “Athlete365 Business Accelerator” and will provide excellent opportunities to athletes, through three main phases: Engagement, Incubation and Acceleration.

During the first stage, an online course on entrepreneurship will be available for free to all athletes, accessible through the Athlete365 platform. Subsequently, during the incubation phase, select athletes who have completed phase one will receive further mentorship on entrepreneurship through two dedicated rounds of workshops that are delivered by experts in the field. Finally, in phase three, a number of athletes, selected on the basis of their project proposals, will receive dedicated and personalised mentorship for six months.

IOC President Thomas Bach said: “Athletes are at the heart of the Olympic Games and we support them in many ways. The Athlete365 Business Accelerator is another important initiative by the IOC which aims to help athletes to build a second career besides their career in sport. The IOC wants to create new opportunities for athletes and we are delighted to offer this in partnership with Professor Muhammad Yunus and the Yunus Centre.”

Since 2005, the IOC has put in place a programme dedicated to athletes’ career transition, named Athlete365 Career+. Delivered in cooperation with The Adecco Group, the programme provides educational resources and focuses on three main pillars: education, life skills and employment. It also offers career development, help in identifying existing skills, coaching and assistance in finding jobs and internships.