Jakarta - Inspired by the success of the inaugural ‘Champions Academy' in 2009, when a young boy with mature footballing skills was spotted by AS Roma, Biskuat of Kraft Foods Indonesia has initiated an even more ambitious campaign - The Dream Team of Biskuat Macan Indonesia.
Trials commenced on 28 May 2010, and were held in five major Indonesia cities - Makassar, Surabaya, Medan, Bandung and Jakarta. The audition and camp training used the scouting module from Arsenal Soccer School as well as the standard of talent scouting authorized by Sport & Youth Ministry Department of Indonesia.
The trials gave children the chance to demonstrate their soccer skills. 7,500 participants were narrowed down to 20 children, who embarked on intensive training at Biskuat Training Camp in Jakarta, under the expert eye of the program's Ambassador, Indonesian soccer star Bambang Pamungkas, and professional coaches such as Dale Mulholland - formerly a player with the USA National Team; Fandi Ahmad AKA the "Asian Tiger"- former striker with the Singapore National Team; and OJ. Onana - formerly on the National Team of Cameroon, who played in the World Cup '90.
Tiger Biskuat's Dream Team aims to have a positive social impact, especially in rural Indonesian communities where children don't necessarily get the opportunity to utilize nascent sporting talents, it also provides an international platform for young sport stars. Together with Saatchi Connect and Arsenal Soccer School Indonesia, Biskuat uncovers and nurtures fledgling sporting capabilities.
The most inspiring story to arise from the trials, is of a young boy named Alfath, who auditioned in Surabaya, making it to the final round but not qualifying for the nation-wide camp training. Refusing to give up on his dream of representing his country at the Arsenal Soccer Festival, Alfath took a 14-hour train ride from Surabaya to the Jakarta trials, embarking on the journey alone since his father is unable to walk, and could only afford to give him a small amount of money for the trip. His determination paid off, and he will represent Indonesia at the Soccer Festival.
Steven Tan, President Director of PT. Kraft Foods Indonesia said: "PT. Kraft Foods Indonesia sees the great potential of Indonesian children in the soccer field. We fully realize the importance of shaping their potential at the earliest stage, and to help them reach their dreams of becoming a champion in the future."
Dini D. Makmun, Chief Executive Officer of Saatchi & Saatchi Indonesia explains: "Our pride for this campaign comes in multitude forms however the ultimate feeling takes place when we see these children striving on the training field. Because this champion academy for us is not to merely harnessing their talents in soccer but to believe in their dreams. Saatchi & Saatchi together with Biskuat are therefore committed to nurture their potential, determination and aspiration."
The final selection stage involved choosing 15 of the shortlisted 20 children, to represent Indonesia at the 20th International Arsenal Soccer Festival, from 31 July - 8 August, at Royal Holloway University in the UK. They will have the opportunity to compete against teams from all over the world, including USA, Europe, South African and India, giving them a gateway to international exposure.
Year one of the campaign posed a challenge to Saatchi & Saatchi Indonesia's ECD Juhi Kalia, to bring to life the ethos of Indonesia's favourite energy biscuit ‘Everyone can be a champion'. The response to the brief was to create a campaign that was interactive, and utilized digital and traditional marketing methods, with children creating web movies and blogs about their experience of the ‘Champions Academy'. Shortlisted for a Promo & Activation Lion at Cannes, ‘Champion's Academy' can be proud of its success in uncovering the nation's hidden sporting talent. Children were invited to country-wide trials, and out of 16,032 applicants, 50 were selected for a rigorous training programme run by Indonesia's top sporting personalities.