After a largely quiet few days for Bolton Wanderers, the end of last week moved at frenetic pace with a brand new badge, a brand new home kit, a new shirt sponsor, that shirt sponsor's deal being cancelled, and a local brand taking over. It's that local brand that has drawn the most interest as Bolton turned a PR disaster in the opposite direction and won favor from just about every corner of the football world.
Through all of that, details about Bolton's new shirt sponsor, FibrLec, were relatively few and far between. As such, we made it our mission to try to learn more about the company and who better to ask than FibrLec's managing director, Jamie MacGregor. We spoke briefly with Jamie, a Bolton Wanderers fan himself, about the company, its product, the matchday experience, and more.
Lion of Vienna Suite: Can you briefly describe FibrLec's history as a company?
Jamie MacGregor: We have been aware of the product for a little while now and have had our eye on gaining the patent since we first heard about it in detail. In March we incorporated Fibrlec as a limited company and finalised our license agreement with the university of Bolton. So, you could say the company history is pretty recent. We do, however, have great belief in this product and indeed in some others that are in the pipeline so we envisage creating a long history; hopefully with Bolton Wanderers involved.
LVS: The company's main product is a "piezoelectric photovoltaic fibre" that will be used as a sustainable energy solution, correct? What kind of impact do you hope this technology will have?
JM: Correct. That answer could take me all day! Ha. We hope the impact will be huge. The list of possible applications grows each day. From trees that generate electricity in the wind, rain, and sun (or Bolton trees, as I call them) to using the fibre in clothing to, say, charge your phone as you walk. There are so many applications that could have an impact. We have had some very interesting enquiries since the Bolton Wanderers deal but I can't tell you too much about those just yet.
Photo courtesy of FibrLec (Left to right: Anthony Keating, Jamie MacGregor, Daniel Keating.)
LVS: From the outside looking in, it seemed like FibrLec's sponsorship deal happened rather quickly. Are you able to tell us how the deal came about?
JM: I can tell you that it did come together rather quickly, but that is not always a bad thing. If I'm honest, it's not something we had considered until the opportunity presented itself and naturally, I was very keen, being a supporter.
LVS: As a Bolton lad yourself, how does it feel seeing your company's sponsorship on the front of Bolton's shirts?
JM: I'm struggling for a word to describe it. As I have told many others, I almost cried when I saw it on the national news. The shirt launch felt so surreal. All my friends who I go to the match with we're texting me pictures of Chung-Yong Lee and David Wheater in the new kit with our logo on it! Awesome. I haven't been a fan of some of our kits over the years so I'm made up that it was a great design that features our logo. It will be brilliant when I see it on TVV. One of our dreams is to see it next season on sky sports as the team runs out at Old Trafford. Wouldn't that be something?
Bolton Wanderers promotional photo
LVS: What, if anything, does FibrLec plan on contributing anything to the Bolton matchday experience like previous sponsors had?
JM: Good question. Aside from the financial contribution, it's hard for me to answer as I don't know much about the previous sponsors arrangements. That said, we hope we can add something to the match day experience and it is something we will be discussing. I like the concept of enhancing the match day experience so it is something we will endeavour to support should be we able.