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Meet Our Team: Co-Founder Chris
04 March 2019

Meet Our Team: Co-Founder Chris

If you’ve ever used a particular product or service and wondered, ‘how did they even come up with this idea? It’s genius!’, or if you’ve been keen to find out the person behind the idea, you won’t be alone! Lots of you ask us how Coacha evolved, who’s idea it was, where did the idea stem from; and we love telling the story!
 

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This week we’re introducing Co-Founder Chris. Being a keen athlete and active competitor in his own right, Chris is well-accustomed to the ups and downs that come with learning, competing and coaching. At nearly 40 years of age, Chris still competes nationally and internationally in his current obsession, Brazillian JiuJitsu. Having recently received his Brown Belt in BJJ, he is also responsible for the training of the competitors for Gracie Barra Gloucester.

Chris was the person who initially came up with the idea for Coacha quite a few years back. Chris led his own department in the Marketing and Graphic Design industry with Co-Founder Jason for years. Eventually setting up their own Web Design and Digital Marketing agency back in 2001, Chris was more than equipped with the skills to build products just like Coacha for their clients. So, when the time came to find a piece of software for his own coaching needs, there was only one way to do it…


The Important Stuff


Tea or Coffee?: Coffee.

How do you take your Coffee?: Strong.

What did you want to be when you were younger?: I wanted to be a Marine Biologist.

An interesting fact about you?: I’m a Qualified Nutrition Advisor.

 

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Personal/Education


What did you do before Coacha?: Before Coacha I had spent my life in Marketing. I began as an office junior and worked my way up to managing a department. This was in the very early days of the Web and I was fortunate to be on the crest of the wave. Quickly I moved into developing systems and processes for web-based applications. Eventually, myself and Jason began our Digital Marketing and development business, and the rest is history!

Where did the idea of Coacha come from?: I’ve been involved in sports coaching from the age of about 17 and a consistent theme in the last 20 years has been the ‘admin’ associated with running sports clubs.

One day I was watching my wife (who is also a Coach/Programme Director) leave the house with a pile of folders and thought… there must be a better way! I sat down and investigated the viable options out there for her specific needs. There weren’t any!

Sure, there were lots of ‘Gym management’ solutions in the marketplace. But none that were extremely simple to use, cost effective and cloud based (so that she could take it with her wherever she was).

When we couldn’t find a piece of existing software on the market to suit our needs, the idea of Coacha was born and we never looked back.

Do you have any hobbies?: Martial Arts, Coaching & Nutrition.

Your favourite place to get away?: Any Forest.


The very important stuff


Are you interested in Sport yourself?: I am a lifelong martial artists and sportsman. In my early years I played national level Volleyball, Basketball and Badminton. I have also been involved in the Martial Arts since about the age of 7 when my mum took me to a local Judo Club. I have Black Belts in several Japanese Martial Arts, Instructor certification in specific Chinese Martial Arts, and now am absorbed in my quest for the illustrious Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, a quest that has proven more difficult and demanding than any other I have undertaken in the Martial Arts.

Were there any other names in the mix, or was it always ‘Coacha’?: For a while we were called ‘Ongo’… I have no idea how that came about!

What’s the best thing about being a Director and Founder?: Planning the future of the company and seeing my team driving to make Coacha a leading light in Sports Club Management is a constant source of enjoyment.

What’s your favourite part of your job?: The way Coacha actually works and how the user interface looks largely falls on my shoulders. Seeing my vision become a reality through the various iterations of the product is extremely satisfying.

What’s the least favourite part of your job?: Waiting for New Developments to be completed can be painful, especially when I know how much they will help our amazing user base.

What are your ambitions for the future?: To grow the functionality and user experience of our product as much as possible, without compromising its simplicity. We believe that through our software, through getting people to use it because it is easy, we can begin to improve important things like child safeguarding in sport and the widespread adoption of best practices.

Testimonials

Taylor James

Taylor James

Sep 25, 2018

Always do their best to help sports clubs save time, money and do more things that they enjoy.

Kelly Loughlin

Kelly Loughlin

Sep 25, 2018

An amazing service, has saved me hours and hours of admin. Easy way to take payments and safely store athlete details. Such a huge weight off my shoulders!

Marley Hughes

Marley Hughes

Sep 6, 2018

Couldn't run my swimming classes without it now. The team are just great, really helpful, will always help you out. The system is really reliable - I tried a lot of different pieces of software and none matched Coacha for price and features. Thanks guys. x

Kim Readman

Kim Readman

Nov 7, 2018

Great software, still very much a work in progress, but fantastic so far and the customer service is absolutely first rate :)

Jess Mortimer

Jess Mortimer

Oct 1, 2018

We have just started using Coacha this season and honestly it is one of the best decisions I have made this year! I used to spend hours on admin, chasing people for payments, taking cash & cheques to the bank and then checking to make sure the payments had actually gone into our account. Now I no longer have to write out invoices or handle cash and Coacha wil... l do the chasing for payments for me - which is amazing! Whenever I have any questions I get straight on the phone and their amazing team have either got the problem solved in seconds, or they get back to me as soon as they can with a solution. I cannot recommended this software and the support team enough. Thank you from one happy and less stressed Cheerleading coach!  read more

Katie Dignan

Katie Dignan

Sep 25, 2018

Amazing software that has helped our club so much!

Nick Phillips-Holt

Nick Phillips-Holt

Jul 27, 2018

Coacha is superb. I run a shooting range in Gloucestershire and it helps me keep on top of my admin. Helpful support. Very good software that they should charge more for!

Alice BK Robinson

Alice BK Robinson

Jan 22, 2019

Brilliant service, saved us so much time in the office meaning we can spend more time actually coaching!! 100% recommend!

Brooke Hockley

Brooke Hockley

Sep 26, 2018

Before heading into our second season as a club and doubling in size we were very apprehensive about the administration aspect. I am so grateful to have come across coacha as it has made my life seamless in terms of the membership process among other factors such as data protection. We have also set up a stripe account to collect our monthly fees and I am very ex... cited about this as it is going to completely eliminate the tiresome process of chasing people. The report section of coacha is also really handy to be able to track who has set up their subscription. Taylor & the coacha team’s response time to feedback is excellent and I have been very impressed with the service so far. Coacha is revolutionising the way we work and they are doing a fantastic job!  read more

Molly Jewitt

Molly Jewitt

Jan 8, 2019

The Coacha software has made managing our swim school so much easier! So simple and straight forward to use and saves hours of admin work.
No more chasing people for payments getting half cash half bank transfers or having to think who paid what, everything is sorted out with a click of a button! Highly recommend, great software!

Taylor James

Taylor James

Sep 25, 2018

Always do their best to help sports clubs save time, money and do more things that they enjoy.

Kelly Loughlin

Kelly Loughlin

Sep 25, 2018

An amazing service, has saved me hours and hours of admin. Easy way to take payments and safely store athlete details. Such a huge weight off my shoulders!

Marley Hughes

Marley Hughes

Sep 6, 2018

Couldn't run my swimming classes without it now. The team are just great, really helpful, will always help you out. The system is really reliable - I tried a lot of different pieces of software and none matched Coacha for price and features. Thanks guys. x

Kim Readman

Kim Readman

Nov 7, 2018

Great software, still very much a work in progress, but fantastic so far and the customer service is absolutely first rate :)

Jess Mortimer

Jess Mortimer

Oct 1, 2018

We have just started using Coacha this season and honestly it is one of the best decisions I have made this year! I used to spend hours on admin, chasing people for payments, taking cash & cheques to the bank and then checking to make sure the payments had actually gone into our account. Now I no longer have to write out invoices or handle cash and Coacha wil... l do the chasing for payments for me - which is amazing! Whenever I have any questions I get straight on the phone and their amazing team have either got the problem solved in seconds, or they get back to me as soon as they can with a solution. I cannot recommended this software and the support team enough. Thank you from one happy and less stressed Cheerleading coach!  read more

Katie Dignan

Katie Dignan

Sep 25, 2018

Amazing software that has helped our club so much!




‘Coacha revolutionised my program administration and saves me time and money.’

Sarah Watkins - Program Direction - GCA Cheer