JOA, LASCO join hands in pursuit of Tokyo 2020 dream

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

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THE Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) is determined to see the nation represented in 10 sporting disciplines in the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan.

Since taking over at the helm just over a year ago, the new administration has been able to demonstrate its commitment to that cause to its member associations who have completely embraced the concept.

Importantly, however, there has been more and more corporate buy-in and this was revealed by Peter Mark Chin, deputy executive chairman of LASCO Group at the Courtleigh Hotel last Thursday. The company executive was speaking at the press launch to announce a four-year $28-m partnership between the manufacturing and distribution giant and the JOA.

“We are extremely happy to be able to support the cause, not just of maintaining Jamaica's dominance, but also to break greater barriers in sports locally and internationally. We at LASCO are indeed committed to play our part in making the 10 in 20 dream a reality,” Chin said.

He praised the vast number of men and women who have represented Jamaica in various sporting disciplines over the years.

“We are inordinately proud of the thousands who have represented us so well in sports... we value and appreciate their contribution in putting Jamaica on the global map today and for developing a reputation for Jamaica as a sporting powerhouse.”

Chin lauded the leadership of the JOA for their bold initiative to increase Jamaica's Olympic impact.

“We congratulate the new executive team of the JOA, led by president, Mr Christopher Samuda, and CEO, Mr Ryan Foster. We laud their vision and the ambitious objective to qualify and facilitate 10 sporting disciplines representing Jamaica in the 32nd Olympiad in Tokyo 2020. That's “10 in 20”. We also applaud you on taking steps to put in place the necessary corporate structure and strategy to make this a reality,” he noted.

Chin revealed that it wasn't a hard sell when the JOA came calling and outlined their vision to him.

“When Ryan and the JOA team shared with us their intention to foster the well-being of 41-member sporting associations, we were immediately attuned as this commendable initiative will help fuel the personal ambitions of our local athletes as well as the national ambitions of the sporting bodies.

“LASCO has long held a philosophy that sports is an important vehicle for personal and national development,” he noted.

He also reminded the audience of LASCO's involvement in Jamaica's track and field, which dates back to the 1990s.

“We have been a major sponsor of sports over the years, dating back to 1996 Olympic team, [with] Dionne Hemmings, the first Jamaican woman to win an Olympic gold medal and Jamaica's only gold medal for that year which was the women's 400M hurdles.”

Under the LASCO/JOA partnership, 41 member sporting organisations will benefit from the wide range of LASCO nutritional products, extensive promotional support, and financial services and cash contribution, especially to the costs for supporting and qualifying 10 sporting disciplines for the 2020 Olympics.

“So, with the shared vision of the JOA and our own desire to continue to fuel the passion and ambitions of our local athletes, the LASCO Affiliated Companies — LASCO Distributors, LASCO Manufacturing and LASCO Financial Services — are extremely proud to support the JOA with a sponsorship package of $28 million dollars over the next four years,” Chin said.

CEO of the JOA, Ryan Foster, was grateful to LASCO for committing to the Olympic cause.

“Thank you for seeing and buying into our vision of preserving the Olympic legacy here in Jamaica. The JOA is extremely proud to partner with such a strong Jamaican brand, a company that is the symbol of excellence and strong corporate philanthropy,” he said.

As the official nutrition partner of the JOA, Lasco will provide a wide range of products geared toward athletes such as Nutrify and LASCO Food Drinks.

— Dwayne Richards

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