|Machel joins Digicel family |
By Sasha Harrinanan Sunday, January 10 2016
Soca star Machel Montano is now an official brand ambassador for telecommunications company, Digicel.
The surprise announcement that the reigning Road March Monarch was joining fellow soca stars, Destra Garcia, Kees Dieffenthaller and Ravi “Ravi B” Bissembhar as a Digicel brand ambassador, was made Friday evening during the launch of “Digicel Play”; a 100 percent fibre-optic home entertainment service featuring more than 240 television channels, broadband speeds of up to 200 megabits per second (Mbps) and a free handset “to enjoy (Digicel’s) crisp and reliable digital voice quality.”
As cheerleaders shook silver pom-poms behind him on the stage erected inside Digicel Trinidad and Tobago’s “Experience Store” at its head office on Maraval Road, Port-of-Spain, chief executive officer (CEO) of Digicel Play, Garvin Medera declared, “Ladies and gentlemen, I’d like to introduce the newest member of the Digicel family, the one and only Machel Montano!”
Smiling broadly, the soca star explained what this new partnership means, starting with the importance of 2016 — it’s the year of the monkey according to the Chinese zodiac and the year of the Monk Evolution, referring to his new creative identity, after rebranding himself a few years ago.
“Digicel Play, we are about to play and have some fun…I’m on the move today (and) I hope that with this (partnership), we are here to increase territory, increase our reach. Monk Monte is the movement of knowledge and our message is love and celebration of our Caribbean music, culture and way of life…so this collaboration means a lot to me; to help get that message out,” Montano told the audience.
He previously served as a brand ambassador for the Telecommunications Services of Trinidad and Tobago Limited (TSTT) for almost eight years but was dropped in January 2013 following his conviction the month before on five criminal charges of assault and using obscene language during a fracas near the Zen nightclub in Port-of-Spain in 2007.
Speaking with Sunday Newsday when the formal part of the evening was over, Montano said while the opportunity existed before to sign with Digicel, “now is the right time, as we start a new year and a new philosophy of evolution for the Monk team.” Stating he believes the world is now “embracing soca music,” Montano told Sunday Newsday his new role as a Digicel brand ambassador “is a critical move” because it would provide him with “greater ways” to communicate with people regionally and globally in a fast, seamless manner.
“It’s important not just for me as an artiste but it’s important for our culture as people. We have to be a force in the world; I think the world is now really mesmerised by Caribbean life and what we stand for in our music, in our food and it’s important for us to be able to communicate with them.” Asked about the length of his contract, Montano said he didn’t want to go into details on Friday evening and was sure Digicel would provide such information soon.
On the matter of how much his contract is worth, the soca star coyly replied, “I am always well compensated for the things that I have to execute.”