Accelerate Sport are proud to announce Edward Gregory has been appointed Chief Executive Officer effective as of 27 September 2017. Current Directors, Songezo Nayo and Gary Grant will continue as Chairman and Managing Director respectively.
Having joined Accelerate on a permanent basis in 2013 following a successful internship, Edward Gregory has rapidly risen through the ranks and will now look to further help drive Accelerate’s existing team, portfolio and client base forward.
After completing his Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management from the University of Cape Town, Edward grew his knowledge of the sports industry through internships at Openfield and Signet Licensing before moving to Accelerate Sport as a Sponsorship Executive. In this role, he became instrumental in the growth of the Brutal Fruit Netball Premier League and was subsequently appointed Head of Sponsorships in 2015.
Edward continued to flourish in the new role, and was a key role player in the launch of the City Surf Series which has taken South Africa by storm. Much of the Series’ success was due to his ability to bring Volkswagen on board as the Official Vehicle Partner, which has reignited the surfing community’s passion for VW, which had become synonymous with surfing since its boom back in the 1950’s
“This is the perfect time for Edward to become Accelerate’s Chief Executive Officer. We have selected a young leader at a time when Accelerate is establishing its footprint in the emerging sport market in Southern Africa,” said Gary Grant. “The fast-changing landscape of sport has seen the need for industry expertise become more crucial than it has ever been. We have seen an incredible increase in the demand for niche sports, especially among the female market, and we believe Edward has the ability to continue to translate our vision and strategy into world-class service, provide innovative thinking and sustain trusting long-term relationships.
“I joined the company as a young and hungry graduate who wanted to experience all aspects of the sports industry, Accelerate allowed me the freedom to do that and be involved across all levels of the business and as a result it allowed me to diversify my knowledge more than I ever could have hoped. This company believes in going beyond what is expected and delivering above and beyond what it promises and as someone who always wants to push myself further I couldn’t imagine a better fit. The role promises to be challenging but I have a great team and truly believe in the direction we are going as a company, so I look forward to taking us further.”
With the new appointment, Gary Grant, will remain as the Managing Director. He will devote his time to supporting Edward and engaging closely with existing and new clients locally, across Africa and further international markets, with a special focus on leading Accelerate’s role in developing emerging sports and sectors. Gary Grant has served as Managing Director since 2013, having founded the company in 2004. He has since worked with numerous clients such as Tsogo Sun, British Airways, Adcock Ingram, Europe Car, Gilbert, Asics and consulted for numerous sport federations including Netball South Africa, COSAFA, World Surf League, Surfing South Africa, Squash South Africa, Senior Golf Tour and British & Irish Lions.
Founded in 2004, Accelerate Sport is a leader in emerging and niche sports in South Africa and combines experience in the fields of marketing, event management, understanding of the operations and dynamics of sports federations and strategic planning, Accelerate Sport is a privately-owned business (with full level 4 BBBEE compliancy), which has its headquarters in the trendy suburb of Claremont in Cape Town, South Africa.