GRACE-KENNEDY AND SPORTSMAX TAKE CHAMPS WORLDWIDE LIVE
Due to the high demand for access this year, SportsMax will be providing live internet streaming and live television broadcast coverage of the much anticipated 2011 ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys’ and Girls’ Athletic Championships (Champs), courtesy of broadcast sponsors Grace Foods and Western Union. With just a few tickets remaining, the ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys’ and Girls’ championships slated for Wednesday March 30th to Saturday April 2nd is set to be the most exciting local sporting event.
The deal announced this week, will see the games broadcast live online and also on the various SportsMax channels throughout the Caribbean. This will enable diehard overseas based fans of ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys’ and Girls’ Championships who are not able to make the trip to Jamaica this year to cheer for their alma maters.
President and CEO of SportsMax, Oliver McIntosh says the deal is perfect for their viewers: “SportsMax now has a significant and unprecedented stake in the biggest event on Jamaica’s local sporting calendar. No other sporting event pulls as big an audience across both hardcore and habitual sports viewers as Champs does. This complements our inventory of track and field offerings to track fans wherever they may reside outside of Jamaica and so we are very pleased with the opportunities presented to us through this deal to bring ISSA/ GraceKennedy Champs 2011 to an international audience.”
GraceKennedy has been the title sponsor for ISSA Boys’ and Girls’ Champs since 2007 and it is a partnership of which the company is extremely proud as these championships are the first platform where many of Jamaica’s future stars get a taste of real competition. Western Union, as part of the GraceKennedy group with operations in seven other Caribbean markets along with Grace Foods are the leading brands associated with the four day event. Noel Greenland, Vice-president of Marketing at GraceKennedy Money Services explains, “At the start of our sponsorship in 2007, we set as one of our mandates to internationalize ISSA/GraceKennedy BOYS’ & GIRLS’ CHAMPS. We are happy to report that four years later, SportsMax and ISSA have made that desire a reality”.
The CHAMPS fever transcends the Jamaican shores as several high schools have deep alumni chapters in North America with members itching to be a part of the celebration. Former champs athlete Damion Cameron who lives in New York says he can’t wait to tune into SportMax this weekend: “Me and my friends from high school always come for champs but this year because of several factors and a not so good economy we decided against the trip. But now we’re excited to find out that ISSA, GraceKennedy and SportsMax will be bringing Champs to us in New York. That simply means that I have to round up the posse and start planning a Champs party”.
Grace Foods is on board for the Champs celebration with its wide array of nutritious products. Anthony Lawrence, Global Brand Manager, Grace Foods explains how the SportsMax deal facilitates more fans: “The National stadium can only hold 35,000 people. However the scores of persons who want to share in the ISSA/GraceKennedy Champs experience far exceed that number. This partnership with SportsMax allows anybody, anywhere in the world to sit at home in their living room with a cold Grace Coconut Water and feel like they’re there”.
SportsMax holds the International TV and internet licensing for the games via a deal inked with the Inter Secondary-School Sports Association (ISSA). ISSA/GraceKennedy CHAMPS 2011 coverage into 22 Caribbean markets, the United States and worldwide through the web is made possible courtesy of broadcast sponsors Grace Foods and Western Union. With tickets being a scarce commodity this year, this partnership is rather timely as Jamaicans abroad along with fans of Jamaican athletics will still be able to catch all the action.