Barça Innovation Hub becomes shareholder in biotechnology startup Onalabs

Barça Innovation Hub becomes shareholder in biotechnology startup Onalabs

Company that offers a solution to monitor physiological parameters in sweat is the third company in which BIHUB has invested, following on from Visualfy and OLIVER in February

For a few months now, the Barça Innovation Hub (BIHUB) has been successfully exploring a new strategic line focused on supporting entrepreneurial talent in the sports sector. This is taking shape by BIHUB becoming a shareholder in several startups that offer disruptive products and value services.

BIHUB is now expanding its network with the addition of Onalabs, a Catalan startup in the medical and technological field focused on the development of a solution to monitor health and sports performance through sweat. Onalabs produces a new generation of wearable, non-invasive and remote medical devices that turn perspiration into an intelligent biofluid and skin into a health data platform. 

Evolution of the Onasport multisensor

ONASPORT is a device in the form of a pectoral band that uses sweat, non-invasively and in real time, to measure lactate levels (an indicator of muscle fatigue), sweating and dehydration in athletes. This is internal load data of major value that serves to optimally plan training and thus achieve greater muscle efficiency.

As a result of their partnership, BIHUB and Onalabs plan to take this multi-sensor to the next level and over the coming months they will be working to develop it with the help of the club’s athletes. The idea is to create a more sophisticated product that is capable of recording new biomarkers to expand the existing data ecosystem and shed even further light on the future of fitness and injury prevention.

Democratising health

Onalabs was founded in December 2016 with the aim of democratising access to health. As well as ONASPORT, the startup has two other products, mainly aimed at the medical and healthcare sector. There is ONAVITAL, a biosensor that measures vital physiological parameters such as blood pressure, oxygen saturation, heart rate and skin temperature. And there is ONADM, another biosensor that is currently under development for continuous, remote and non-invasive monitoring of blood glucose levels in sweat without the need for needles.

In the clinical field, its products make it easier for doctors to monitor patients continuously, non-invasively and remotely and provide rigorous data that improves decision-making in treatments. 

Onalabs, third startup after Visualfy and OLIVER

Onalabs is the third startup in which BIHUB has invested, following the announcement last February of shareholder interests in Visualfy and OLIVER. The former is a company that works to promote accessibility for the deaf and people with hearing impairments. The latter is a solution that makes data management accessible to grassroots sports clubs so they can boost their athletes’ performance.

Visualfy has already applied its technology to the OAB offices at Spotify Camp Nou and is working with the club to make Espai Barça an accessible environment for people with hearing difficulties. OLIVER, meanwhile, has taken its first steps into the blaugrana universe by presenting its device to the coaches and partners of the Barça Academy World Cup and has also applied its solution to some of the Barça youth teams.

Barça at the forefront of innovation

The main purpose of BIHUB’s investment in startups is to foster the club’s role as a driver of innovation in an environment where emerging companies are able to adapt high-profile technologies and solutions much faster than larger companies.

The club, meanwhile, is more than willing to offer its many assets, its know-how, and access to its athletes and facilities, and is therefore keen for such companies to establish synergies with their stakeholders.

This new portfolio of startups places the club at the very forefront of changes in sport and helps to put the Barça name at the service of the diversification of the Catalan economy. Nationwide, it is conducive to Barcelona and Catalonia developing an added-value economy that promotes local talent while also attracting global talent.

Statement by Joan Laporta, president of FC Barcelona:

"The Barça Innovation Hub has made a clear commitment to investing in start-ups and to remain at the forefront of innovation in the world of sport. By becoming involved with Onalabs, the Club can make the most of such a relevant area as collecting biometric data from our sportspeople, essential information when it comes to optimising training sessions and improving our players’ physical preparation. Barça Innovation Hub’s work continues to place the Club at the cutting edge of innovation and in a leading role regarding key aspects in the future of the sector".

Statement by Elisabet del Valle, CEO and co-founder of Onalabs:

“At Onalabs, we hope to become a leading international company in innovations for remote and non-invasive monitoring of health parameters, in order have a valuable impact on different disciplines, including the sports sector. We are convinced that the involvement of Barça Innovation Hub will lead to a disruptive alliance that can boost knowledge and leadership in this area, and will be the beginning of major changes and new paradigms in the monitoring of health and training in sport.”

Força Barça
Força Barça

Related to this article

Close article

Related to this article