‘WE CAN BE GIANTS!’
New co-chief executive officer (CEO) of Professional Football Jamaica Limited (PFJL) Kemoi Burke says he intends to further elevate the standard of the Wray & Nephew Jamaica Premier League (JPL), making it one of the best in the region.
Burke, who has been involved in local marketing for close to a decade, was appointed in November with PFJL Chairman Christopher Williams splitting duties with Owen Hill, who was named PFJL CEO in September 2022.
Burke told the Jamaica Observer that after lengthy discussions with Williams and Hill, it was an opportunity that he couldn’t turn down.
“The PFJL team has been making significant strides in improving the club football ecosystem by delivering greater value for the clubs, players, fans, sponsors and other stakeholders alike,” he said. “To improve the efficiency of creating and delivering value to all stakeholders, Chris, as the chairman, made the strategic decision to split the CEO role in two, with Owen now primarily focused on the Operations and Development portfolio, while my main focus is on the Commercialisation aspect. Having been involved with the PFJL as a sponsor last year and seeing the great potential of the JPL, once Chris and Owen presented the roadmap and asked me to join the team, the decision was easy,” he said.
The former marketing and sponsorship manager of Lynk has already set some lofty goals for the league’s growth.
“The wider JPL team and administrators have made settling into the role quite smooth,” Burke said. “While expectations are expectedly high, with the team’s support, my main aim each day is to execute steps delivering value to each of our stakeholders. That is, our fans, players, clubs, and our sponsors.
“My main objectives as I execute my role are to grow broadcast distribution and viewership; increase match day attendance; increase sponsorship revenue, and value we deliver to them; expose the talents of our players to the wider Jamaica and the world; and to develop other revenue streams to further improve the financial performance of the clubs.”
While the PFJL has made strides in marketing the local product, Burke says more can be done.
“As evidenced by the number of players who have been securing moves to international clubs recently, the increase in the minimum level coaching badge needed to take charge of a JPL team, and two JPL teams making it to the semi-finals of the just-concluded Concacaf Caribbean Cup, I would say that the league is in a good place and is already among the best in the region. But I also think that the league is poised for an explosion into greater commercial success,” he said.
“Although football remains Jamaica’s favourite sport, with fans’ exposure to football leagues around the world, their wants and expectations have increased alongside our desire to position the JPL to deliver a world-class football product. It is against this background that we are improving the audio-visual appeal and the production of our broadcast, the distribution of the broadcast, and the game-day experience to further increase the attraction of the JPL product to fans and sponsors alike.”