Pro Football Focus (PFF), a US sports analytics company, has announced plans to create 21 permanent jobs in Ireland along with 175 seasonal analyst roles as it expands into the European football market.
Known as a significant player in American football analytics, providing game and player data insights to all 32 teams in the National Football League and more than 100 college gridiron teams through its subscription-based platform, PFF also counts sports media brands like NBC Sports and Fox Sports among its customers.
The company said it is developing a suite of soccer products aimed at European clubs, which it plans to launch next month.
PFF said the decision to establish an operation in Ireland was “primarily driven by the availability of talent and the flourishing sports tech ecosystem here”. It expects the investment, supported by IDA Ireland, to deliver 21 full time roles and 175 seasonal analyst roles in Ireland over the next three years.
The European launch follows last weekend’s Aer Lingus Classic at Dublin’s Aviva Stadium between the Nebraska Cornhuskers and the Northwestern Wildcats, both of which are clients of the business.
Nate Gerstle, general manager of soccer operations at PFF, said: “Ireland will play a key role in PFF’s expansion into the beautiful game. Its strategic location, the availability of skilled labour, and rich history of achievements in science and technology are among the many reasons why our management team chose Ireland.
“Pro Football Focus is a really welcome addition to the growing sports tech sector in Ireland,” said Minister for Enterprise Leo Varadkar.
“These are exciting and interesting roles in software development, data collection and analysis in an international sports analytics company. I’m particularly pleased to see the company provide remote working opportunities — it’s important to give employees the option, where possible and the Government is putting in place the infrastructure to support that choice.”
Originally launched in the UK in 2009, the company is chaired and owned by NBC broadcaster and former NFL player Cris Collinsworth, who took a majority stake in PFF in 2014.