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SBD Global/October 1, 2013/Finance

Team New Zealand Starts $1M Fundraising Effort To Finance Next America's Cup

A "fundraising appeal to send Team New Zealand to the next America's Cup to sort out 'unfinished business'" has raised more than NZ$8,500 ($7,100) in less than 24 hours, and its organizer hopes to hit NZ$1M ($830,000), according to Aimee Gulliver of FAIRFAX NZ NEWS. Kia Kaha Media CEO Ned Dawson, 46, "might be Team New Zealand's biggest supporter." Dawson launched the GiveaLittle campaign on Sunday after "starting up Facebook pages supporting Team New Zealand that now have a collective fan base of more than 60,000 people." Dawson said that the campaign asks for donations of "$2, $5, $10, $20 or whatever you want, every single dollar goes to Team New Zealand to help fund its challenge for the 35th America's Cup." Dawson added that raising NZ$1M "was within reach with America's Cup fever still in the air." Dawson: "Over the last two weeks of the America's Cup, you tell me how many Kiwis weren't sitting in front of the TV captivated by what was going on" (FAIRFAX NZ NEWS, 9/30).

KIM DOTCOM INTERESTED: The EFE reported millionaire entrepreneur Kim Dotcom, a New Zealand resident, "has agreed to give financial help so that Team NZ will be able to participate in the 35th edition of the America's Cup." The New Zealand team's future "is uncertain after its recent defeat, and a debate has been opened in New Zealand, but the government is maintaining its silence about possible financing of Team NZ for future editions of the events." The government's NZ$26M ($22M) contribution for the last America's Cup "was unanimously approved by New Zealand's Parliament," but now New Zealand PM John Key "is indicating that there are doubts about the benefit of government contribution, and no decision has been made." Dotcom said, "Whether the government gives its support or not, I am going to economically back Team New Zealand. If Key says there will be no more funds for the team, my business will become a Team New Zealand sponsor and I am sure that we will win the next America's Cup. I have not even talked with Team NZ, but I believe there is nothing better than being associated with this team" (EFE, 9/30).
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