LAS VEGAS — Feb. 19, 2007 — MSN® today announced a collaboration with three-time NBA All-Star forward LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers to launch LeBron.msn.com, an inspirational, storybook-style Web site for kids and teens. LeBron.msn.com allows people to explore LeBron James’ road to athletic achievement, his dedication to basketball and academics, his devotion to his team, friends and family, and his role as a community activist and people’s champion. The site includes interactive content that provides James with the opportunity to share his experiences and encouraging messages with hundreds of millions of consumers worldwide who use MSN and Windows Live™ services.
“I’ve always wanted to have a place where kids can see all aspects of my personality — where I can really talk with them about where I came from, what I do and how I achieve my goals,” James said. “Working with MSN on LeBron.msn.com allows all my fans across the globe to share in my journey. My goal is to inspire people to achieve their goals and be part of something bigger than themselves.”
An on-demand webcast of the announcement event is available at http://www.microsoft.com/winme/0702/29515/vdo_lebron_msnconf01_MBR.asx (9 mins., 59 secs.). For those interested in hearing James discuss the new Web site, an audio clip is available at http://www.microsoft.com/winme/0702/29515/Lebron_QA.asx.
LeBron.msn.com features an area for kids and fans that is dedicated to highlighting James’ message of perseverance through a series of challenges and obstacles. As participants complete various activities — from starting a pickup basketball game to surfing the Web site — James urges them to take action, be inspired to overcome their own life struggles and make a real difference. Along the way, he will share the difficulties and successes he has faced as well as his thoughts on how to handle tough situations. James will issue new challenges on the Web site every few weeks, and kids will be able to keep track of their progress compared with other challengers. The Web site will also continue to evolve as James prepares to join the U.S. basketball team at the upcoming Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, China, starting Aug. 8, 2008.
“LeBron is one of the great icons in American sports today. His commitment to his sport, community and fans is truly inspiring, and this collaboration provides a fantastic opportunity for MSN customers,” said Joanne Bradford, corporate vice president of Microsoft Corp. and chief media officer of MSN. “The rich networks of MSN and Windows Live will help LeBron advance his brand identity to collaborate and connect with millions of people around the globe in personalized and exciting ways.”
Several Microsoft® Windows Live services will enhance the consumer experience on LeBron.msn.com. LeBron James theme packs and emoticons for Windows Live Messenger will allow people to easily personalize the instant messages they share with friends around the world. Windows Live Spaces customers will be able to personalize their online space with an exclusive LeBron.msn.com design. From the LeBron.msn.com site, consumers will be able to directly access Live Search and utilize Live Search Maps to explore James’ hometown. LRMR Marketing is a partner in the Web site.
“This Web site gives LeBron a chance to be front and center and come to life for his millions of fans,” said Maverick Carter, CEO of LRMR Innovative Marketing & Branding. “It will teach kids about his amazing story, his important messages and his extraordinary skills as one of the world’s most talented and exciting basketball players.”
Beginning today, LeBron.msn.com features a contest that will award a Zune™ media player with James’ preloaded playlist and a pair of his Nike Zoom shoes to two instant winners each week for the next 13 weeks. The shoes will be autographed by James. Those wanting to register for the contest should visit http://lebron.msn.com for details and official rules.
About LeBron James
LeBron James is an internationally recognized basketball superstar who plays for the Cleveland Cavaliers. Selected to the NBA All-Star team every year since he joined the league as the overall No. 1 pick in the 2003 draft, James has electrified fans across the globe with his dazzling play and record-breaking achievements. He became the youngest player in NBA history to win Rookie of the Year honors and reach 7,000 points. James is also a co-captain of the U.S. Olympic basketball team. Off the court, LeBron is active in a wide range of philanthropic endeavors, including the King James Foundation. He also organizes the annual King for Kids Bike-a-thon in Akron, Ohio.
About MSN and Windows Live
MSN attracts more than 465 million unique users worldwide per month. With localized versions available globally in 42 markets and 21 languages, MSN is a world leader in delivering compelling programmed content experiences to consumers and online advertising opportunities to businesses worldwide. Windows Live, a new set of personal Internet services and software, is designed to bring together in one place all the relationships, information and interests people care about most, with enhanced safety and security features across their PC, devices and the Web. MSN and Windows Live will be offered alongside each other as complementary services. Some
Windows Live services entered an early beta phase on Nov. 1, 2005; these and future beta updates can be found at http://ideas.live.com. Windows Live is available at http://www.live.com. MSN is located on the Web at http://www.msn.com. MSN worldwide sites are located at http://www.msn.com/worldwide.ashx.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
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