Global Soccer Star Scheme Scores for ROK

The first six footballers have been selected from over 1,200 who attended the first Regional Assessment Day for ROKs Global Soccer Star (GSS) initiative, which is designed to unearth football talent in Africa, with the mobile phone as a key component in the process.
Aspiring footballers text their request to register for the scheme to a dedicated shortcode. In return, they receive a free SMS message containing a link to a football skills training WAP site, and a unique PIN code that they can use to gain entry to a regional assessment day in their area. The website and the WAP site provide further information on how they can progress through the programme to win a scholarship to the GSS academy in Marbella, Spain.
ROK Marketing Director Bruce Renny tells Mobile Marketing that since the scheme launched in Tanzania, registrations via SMS and MMS have been running at the rate of 2,000 per week.
This is a tremendous figure, and vindicates the decision to put mobile at the centre of the initiative, in a region where people do not routinely have access to a PC, says Renny. 
Over the course of the next four weeks, a further 40 or so players will be selected at Regional Assessment Days in different parts of the country. These, along with the first six, will be invited to take part in a 5-weekend-long Football Camp in Dar es Salam, where the players will be put through their paces by a team of professional coaches, culminating in a match against a team nominated by the Tanzanian Football Federation.
The Football Camp will be the subject of a reality TV show being produced by the Tanzania Broadcasting Company. Over the course of 13 half-hour episodes (two per week starting with the story of the Assessment Day auditions), members of the public will be invited to vote for which players they want to keep in the camp. At the end of the process, the professional coaches running the camp will choose the final few players for the public to vote on, with the last man standing winning a place in a football academy in Marbella, and the chance of making it as a professional.
Vodacom Tanzania and Motorola are supporting the initiative. Motorola is preloading Global Soccer Star content, consisting of sequential training images in local Swahili, on to 1GB memory cards, which will be included with the Motorola W230 handset.
In collaboration with Vodacom Tanzania, Motorola will sell handsets through various Vodacom distribution channels and one lucky winner will receive a free ticket to attend a match between theVodacom Tanzania Premier League and the Vodacom Soccer Academy All Star XI.
GSS aims to replicate the initiative during 2009, with six more programmes in Africa, three in Central America, and one in China.