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Sport business: footballers Asensio and Courtois and NBAers Nance Jr and Harris join the Group 1 agency

A new player is emerging in the world of sports marketing.

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Sport business: footballers Asensio and Courtois and NBAers Nance Jr and Harris join the Group 1 agency

A new player is emerging in the world of sports marketing. Created by Sergio Friede and Pierre Jouannin, who notably worked in the NBA, this new marketing agency officially opens its doors this Thursday. It is aimed in particular at players and clubs, in order to develop internationally and in any case outside their usual catchment area. Agents, leagues and even sponsors can also call on this “totally independent” entity since it will not represent any full-time player. “We specialize in everything related to international development,” summarizes Pierre Jouannin. Due to their pre-existing network, the founders are particularly intended to create a link between the United States and Europe, and vice versa, but not only that.

“A lot of things have already been done with regard to clubs, leagues, so we have a much more structural approach, we provide advice in order to draw inspiration from the American model, not on all points obviously, we do not do no copying and pasting, to improve the structure of high-level sport in Europe,” explains Mr. Jouannin. And added: “What’s new with Groupe 1 is this focus on the international. The agents try to do things outside the boundaries he controls. But when it comes to going to the United States, it is sometimes more complicated, although some people obviously do it very well. We position ourselves to support them, advise them through our expertise and our contacts. This is true in both directions, international to the United States or the other way around. The other important point is our investors.”

Investors who indeed have a certain cachet. We are talking here about the goalkeeper of the Belgium team and Real Madrid Thibaut Courtois and the Spanish international midfielder from Paris Saint-Germain Marco Asensio, and the basketball players Larry Nance Jr (New Orleans Pelicans) and Joe Harris (Detroit Pistons). “They think the same thing as us, namely that the international becomes a priority for everyone in the development of a brand, a player, a league or a team,” swears Pierre Jouannin.

The four thieves are not just investors, even if they obviously have busy days in their lives as top athletes. They were very involved in refining the concept and gave ideas. Example ? “In major international competitions, players are often in excellent conditions and their families travel very well, but what is often missing is a little more personalized support for their family and friends,” notes Pierre Jouannin. In our services for players, in parallel with this support for international development, we have a personalized travel service. We hadn't necessarily thought about it. However, investors have highlighted this point. As for the rest, everyone has their affinities. Marco (Asensio) loves everything travel and has a lot of contacts in this sector. Thibaut too, he has his own travel agency and we will work hand in hand with his agency.

Asensio, Courtois, Nance Jr and Harris, not strangers to the founders, rather men they already knew and trusted. The concept was already in place, and it came to fruition when they said yes to Sergio Friede and Pierre Jouannin, starting with Larry Nance Jr, who is also a football fan. He also has marbles at Leeds United.

“We are quite extensive in terms of services,” continues the co-founder of Groupe 1. “There is also the events part which is mainly aimed at sporting entities, but possibly also for players. We would like to set up international summer camps. The European players camp at home, the same goes for the Americans. But there is no "cross-over" at all. How about a Jayson Tatum camp in Paris or the South of France or a Thibaut Courtois camp in Miami? Obviously it's not for all players, but some would spark an interest. One idea among others.

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