EXTREME Sports Company and The Circuit of Wales are to develop a £425 million sports, entertainment and leisure development.
EXTREME is a global pioneer in the field of extreme and action sports. The Circuit of Wales development is the most significant UK capital investment program in motorsport and extreme sport infrastructure in the last 50 years. It will be situated at Blaenau, Gwent, to the north of Ebbw Vale in Wales.
Blooloop spoke to Alastair Gosling, the founder, chairman and CEO of EXTREME about the collaboration and the future direction of his company.
From Solo Start-up to Global Pioneer
EXTREME began as a small start-up in 1995. “I founded EXTREME when I was 24,” says Gosling. “It arose from my passion for the sports, and started as a television and sports management business.” In 1998 Gosling and his team had the idea of launching a TV channel. They put a business plan together, then spent 18 months seeking funds to make it happen.
“A lot of people said no,” says Gosling. “Then we got lucky. We managed to partner with UPC and Liberty Media Corporation, the big media company who own Formula One. We launched the channel in May 1999 from Holland as a start point. I spent the next 15 years launching it in 60 countries, into about 50 million homes.”
The partnerships with UPC and Liberty Media stand testament to the compelling nature of EXTREME’s proposition at that point. “It was amazing,” says Gosling. “MTV had been launched in the 80s, and there was this market. The industry had grown and sports had gained massively in popularity. It was the right moment, the right time, the right place, and away we went.”
From Television to Branding – Reading the Zeitgeist
Gosling retained his flair for tapping into the zeitgeist. Five or six years ago, he recognised that, as far as the global youth market was concerned, the advent of digital had sounded TV’s death-knell.
“I had a conversation with our partners in which I…