In search of the next sporting star

Ryobi partnered with Matchkit to find the next sporting superstar.

The team at Ryobi have come up with an initiative that searches for talent in any sporting code in a manner like that of ‘The Voice’ where applicants are individuals that embrace the following: 

• They are athletes in a sporting code 

• They are willing to put in an effort 

• They are individuals with a ‘won’t quit’ attitude 

• They are looking for a leg up in their sporting discipline. 

The concept exists under the banner of ‘The Won’t Quit Crew’. 

Ryobi – ‘Power tools that won’t quit’ saw an opportunity to partner with Matchkit in making this a reality. 

MATCHKIT 

Matchkit is a social media platform that offers sports people a single home for fans, sponsors and potential sponsors to find them. The digital world is very fragmented with new social media platforms popping up daily – as an individual it is difficult to actively manage your social media presence, so MatchKit does it for you. 

Matchkit is a permanent digital home with all the features of a full-blown website with the ease of a social media account and the added benefit of automated reporting and an e-commerce platform. 

Sportsmen and women can fan message and sell merchandise from day one without the need for a store of their own – branded clothing will be sourced, shipping and returns handled, and online payments enabled by MatchKit on behalf of individuals. The platform further allows the selling of ShoutOut messages to a fan base – fans order and pay for an athletes’ time benefitting them and the athlete in question.

HISTORY 

Founded in 2020, this DIY website builder enables athletes and their agents to showcase their sporting pedigree and sponsors, with sites going live within minutes. It integrates into existing social media channels, including TikTok to show potential sponsors the scope and quality of an athlete’s influence. 

The concept was the brainchild of Mike Sharman (CEO) who in conversation with Bryan Habana was made aware that there was a distinct lack of website adoption by sports people. Habana, now chief relationship officer and Sharman joined forces with Ben Karpinski, Shaka Sisulu and Andy OG to solve this problem for athletes.

So, the question is, ‘Why did Ryobi decide to partner with MatchKit and launch this competition?’ 

Says Richard Stevens, Ryobi, “We believe in CSI and we think that this initiative is doing CSI the right way. We have the platforms and the privilege and would like to use this to change other peoples’ lives. 

“Our brand resonates with sport. Sport promotes physical and mental health; it develops grit in an individual. There are no negatives in sport and Ryobi wants to leverage off the positives of sport,” Richard adds. 

“The ‘won’t quit’ aspect of our brand is in line with the ‘won’t quit’ attitude of the applicant, we are creating brand ambassadors rather than finding them. The ultimate end game will be to transform our nation, Richard concludes.”

Won’t Quit Crew 

The applicants of the ‘Won’t Quit Crew’ competition need to create a MatchKit profile outlining their ‘Won’t Quit’ mentality and their ‘Won’t-quit’ story. 

This application process closed in July and from the profiles the second phase in the ‘Won’t Quit’ competition begins. 

In this phase applications are vetted, and successful applicants are paired with the three mentors in the programme. The mentors are Kevin Lerena (professional boxer), Akona Ndungane (South African rugby player) and Amanda Dlamini (South African soccer player). The mentors select a mentee from the applications from where they go on a journey together. The mentor helps the mentee become the best possible sports person and this journey is documented on MatchKit for all to follow. The mentorships run parallel to each other, and content is created around the journey.

Meet the Ryobi 2022 ‘Won’t Quit Crew’

To follow the progress of the competition, Visit: https://wontquitcrew.co.za/

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