The GraceKennedy Group has announced the formation of a joint venture company with the Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA), which will manage the media rights to all of ISSA’s sporting events for the next 15 years.
In explaining how the joint venture came to be, Dr. Walton Small, President of ISSA said, “We wanted to maximize the revenue opportunities from secondary school sports in Jamaica to fund the development of those sports and high school athletic programmes overall. We have a long, rich history with GK, and decided to partner with them to make this happen.”
The strength of the GK/ISSA partnership was underscored by Steven Whittingham, Managing Director of GK Capital Management, the investment arm of GraceKennedy, which will oversee the investment on GK’s behalf. “We have built a very strong relationship with ISSA, and have enjoyed working with its Executive team of Dr. Walton Small, Colleen Montague and Keith Wellington. Both entities are excited at the prospects that exist from this joint venture,” Mr Whittingham said.
He explained that the joint venture company called ‘Greenfield Media Productions Ltd’, has acquired the media rights for all ISSA’s sporting events by virtue of a long term licence. ‘Greenfield Media’ will manage the sale and distribution of the television, radio and internet rights locally and globally.
GraceKennedy Group CEO, Don Wehby, said that the GK Group’s earnings from the joint venture will be used, in part, to increase GK’s support to education in Jamaica through the Grace and Staff Community Development Foundation. “GraceKennedy has always invested in the education of Jamaica’s youth, as we know that this is a significant nation building tool for Jamaica. This initiative will increase that investment significantly, and I am very proud of that,” said Wehby.
Under the joint venture with ISSA falls the entire portfolio of High School Boys and Girls sports, which includes Boys and Girls Championships (‘Champs’), Football, Cricket, Netball, Basketball (Boys and Girls), Volleyball, Swimming, Table Tennis, Badminton and Hockey.
The joint venture aims to increase the development of media content for traditional and non-traditional sports and expand distribution in the local and international markets. There will also be human interest content generated, about athletes and institutions which will promote Brand Jamaica’s sporting offerings, accomplishments and prowess to the diaspora and the world.