AFA Superapp makes sports accessible to all

The platform is revolutionising the way sports is experienced and enjoyed in the digital era 

by HAJAR UMIRA MD ZAKI 

DIGITALISATION has led to an ever-widening landscape for businesses, with entrepreneurs grabbing the opportunity to use technology to kickstart their endeavours. 

This includes AFA Superapp, a sports booking app which was launched in 2020 at the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic when most businesses were badly affected. 

However, co-founder and group CEO Raymond H’ng said for AFA Superapp, the pandemic worked as a catalyst for them to accelerate their development and launch. 

“The limitations imposed by the pandemic highlighted the significance of providing a safe, contactless and efficient way for sports enthusiasts to secure their desired venues. 

“It became evident that our platform could not only streamline the booking process, but also contribute to the overall safety and wellbeing of our users. 

“With this newfound urgency and purpose, we dedicated ourselves to expediting the app’s development, refining its features and ensuring its seamless integration with the evolving needs of users during the pandemic,” he told The Malaysian Reserve (TMR). 

H’ng says the app is dedicated in creating new avenues for collaboration and partnerships with diverse entities

A Digital Sports Community

AFA Superapp or “Athletes for Athletes” was established in September 2020 by a group of friends who found it tiresome trying to book their favourite sports venues such as badminton and futsal courts. 

From this obvious “problem”, they found an opportunity to create a simple booking platform which would not only help themselves, but many other active individuals out there. 

“Our goal was to transform the way people book sports venues, making it convenient, efficient and accessible to everyone. 

“Through our platform, users can effortlessly browse through a wide range of venues, check their availability in real-time and instantly book their desired sports facility with just a few clicks,” H’ng said. 

Using the AFA Superapp, users can organise activities easily, seamlessly book a venue, join nearby activities, get reward points and pay via the AFA Pay e-wallet. 

“Of all the features, the seamless venue booking is the favourite among our users, but we hope that they will enjoy the others as well as we continue to build on our product and services,” he asserted. 

Go-To Solution 

H’ng said it is fulfilling to see how the AFA Superapp has grown, and that he and his fellow founders felt a great sense of accomplishment and pride in what they have achieved. He added that it is gratifying to witness their platform become the go-to solution for sports venue bookings. 

“Moreover, we are humbled to have played a part in the digital transformation of the sports industry and contribute to making the sports venue booking process more accessible and efficient, from individual users to sports organisations and facility managers. 

“We have received positive feedback from our users, who appreciate the convenience, reliability and wide selection of venues featured on AFA,” he told TMR. 

H’ng’s team is committed to continue the growth and improvement of the superapp and explore new opportunities, expand their services and leverage the emerging technologies for a better user experience. 

“Our goal is to position AFA as a leading platform in the sports venue booking industry, and we are excited about the prospects of our app,” he said. 

AFA Superapp has a dedicated space for people to gather and participate in each other’s sports activities

Bringing People Together 

Ever since its introduction to the public two years ago, AFA Superapp has utilised the power of sports to foster a sense of community and camaraderie among sports enthusiasts, said H’ng. AFA Superapp has a dedicated space for people to gather and participate in each other’s sports activities. 

H’ng shared that currently AFA Superapp has a base of over 200,000 active users, spanning a network of more than 90 sports centres throughout Malaysia. 

“Our goal is to reach a milestone of 500,000 users and establish partnerships with 150 exceptional sports venues, both within Malaysia and across international borders, as we strive to expand our presence.” 

He said sports is one of the two universally cherished interests in the world. 

“Our platform serves as a unifying hub, bringing together a diverse community of sports enthusiasts to form connections, build relationships and participate in group sporting activities,” he said, adding that it is heartening to see how sports constantly help people make new friends. 

Valuable Lesson in App and Tech Industry

H’ng has learned several significant lessons since diving into the apps and technology industry. 

Among them are the importance of embracing feedback, constantly coming up with ideas and also continuously improving products based on user needs and market trends. 

He also learned how to solve real problems. For example, it is important to ensure that the app and technology address a genuine pinpoint and solve the problem for the target audience. 

H’ng also advises those who aspire to start a business in the technology field to prioritise their user needs and experience, and be agile and adaptable. 

“Always focus on user experience; they are the bread and butter to the success and sustainability of your app or technology business. Retaining customers, plus fostering loyalty and positive word-of-mouth recommendations will ensure long-term growth. 

“This landscape evolves rapidly. So, it is essential to embrace change, monitor industry trends and be willing to pivot your strategy. 

“It is also important to be resilient and persevere as challenges are bound to arise and the journey to building a successful business is an unpredictable journey. Learn from failures, persevere through setbacks and focus on long-term goals,” he said. 

Collaborations and Partnerships

On plans in propagating the growth of a digitalised Malaysian sports industry, H’ng said the app and the people behind it are dedicated in creating new avenues for collaboration and partnerships with diverse entities. 

The latter would include promising start-up companies that are aligned with their vision to expand and continue to enhance their product. 

“By embracing these collaborations, we aim to not only broaden our reach, but also foster innovation and provide an even better experience for our users. We can collectively leverage technological advancements, share expertise and explore new possibilities. 

“Together, we can propel the industry forward and revolutionise the way sports is experienced and enjoyed in this digital era,” he said. 


  • This article first appeared in The Malaysian Reserve weekly print edition
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