Adrian Frater, News Editor
Montego Bay United Football Club (MBUFC), the new entity that has replaced Seba United on the local football landscape, was officially launched in Montego Bay yesterday with its principals vowing to transform the new club into a sustainable organisation.
«Our aim is to lay a solid foundation for the future,» said businessman Orville Powell, the president of MBUFC. «Our aim is to create a sustainable product … ultimately, we want MBUFC to do for Montego Bay what Manchester United and Barcelona FC have done for England and Spain, respectively.»
While the new club is still in its embryonic stage, Powell said much has been happening behind the scene in terms of plotting a marketing strategy, merchandising, upgrading the club’s facility on the outskirts of Montego Bay, and recruiting players for the upcoming National Premier League.
«It is a work in progress but things are progressing smoothly,» said Powell. «We are now having encouraging talks with the Montego Bay business community and we are basically satisfied with the way things are going.»
Jamaica Football Federation president, Captain Horace Burrell, who was the guest speaker at the launch, praised the executive of MBUFC for their courage and foresight, arguing that Montego Bay was an international brand, based on its rich history as a premier tourist destination.
«The name change is incredible, it is a masterstroke because of the tremendous scope it offers for marketing,» noted Burrell.
In an urgent plea to those persons who are still upset with the name change from Seba United to Montego Bay United FC, newspaper publisher Lloyd B. Smith, the interim chairman of the board of MBUFC, said the new club has honourable intentions and should be supported.
«Sustainability requires more than sentiments and emotions,» said Smith. «The main aim of the new organisation is make our football sustainable through good business practices and sound management.»
Businessman Stephen Dear, the vice-president of the Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce, said the Montego Bay chamber was excited with the idea of having a top-flight team bearing the name of the city and pledged the support of the chamber.
During the function, the team’s home and travelling kits, as well as the supporter shirts, were unveiled. As a mark of respect to the late Seba United and Jamaica stalwart, Stephen ‘Shorty’ Malcolm, the teams No. 2 jersey was retired