LeBron James Partners With Drake To Bring Digital Media Company Uninterrupted To Canada
Canadian music entrepreneur Drake has become part-owner and promoter of LeBron James’ media company, Uninterrupted, as the power partners work together to expand the U.S. business into Canada.
James plays basketball for one of the most famous teams in the NBA, the Los Angeles Lakers. Drake has gained visibility in the sports world this year as an official ambassador of the Toronto Raptors. He was there when the Raptors won the NBA title last season, beating the Golden State Warriors.
James is looking to capitalize off Canada winning its first-ever NBA Championship, Forbes reported. Uninterrupted Canada will feature Canadian athletes speaking directly to fans through digital content via short videos and feature pieces.
Uninterrupted Canada is the first international expansion for James’ company, which launched in 2015. The company raised $15.8 million in 2015 from WarnerMedia’s Warner Bros. Entertainment and Turner Sports.
“Expanding into Canada with some incredible partners puts Uninterrupted on a global scale and creates new opportunities for even more athletes and fans to be a part of what we’re building,” James said in a statement.
Drake said, “Uninterrupted has been an incredible platform for athletes to tell their stories and connect with fans. I’m honored to partner with LeBron to bring Uninterrupted to Canada, a country that continuously supports innovation and creativity.”
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Uninterrupted Canada will produce “athlete-driven” content, events and merchandise, collaborating with Shopify Studios to develop content that spotlights athletes and entrepreneurship.
It has signed an exclusive first-look deal with Toronto Raptors star Serge Ibaka, which will include a fashion project. It’s also producing a motivational series with pitcher Marcus Stroman, formerly with the Toronto Blue Jays and now with the New York Mets, focusing on short athletes titled “Height Doesn’t Measure Heart.” Uninterrupted Canada will also distribute content from Uninterrupted U.S.
The Canadian arm of the company will be headed by CEO Scott Moore and chief content officer Vinay Virmani. Moore is a veteran of the Canadian sports scene as a sports broadcaster, Forbes reported. He hopes to raise the status of Canadian athletes through branded content, events and merchandising so they stay relevant and appeal to fans outside of their limited competition area.
“When we started Uninterrupted, it was to give athletes a platform where we could share our stories and connect with our fans in a way we never had before,” James said in a statement. “It’s exciting to see that idea now leading a whole new era of athletes around the world feeling empowered to do more and be more.”
Uninterrupted will continue international expansion in other areas such as cricket in India and soccer in the U.K. and Europe, said James’ business partner, Maverick Carter.
“We’ll focus on sports that people care about and the empowerment of athletes around the world, because that’s a universal feeling and a universal truth,” Carter told The Hollywood Reporter.
Uninterrupted has a content partnership and a development deal with Liverpool Football Club and also partnered with David Beckham’s Studio 9.