Startup Waco And Progage Team Up To Boost Marketability of Baylor Student-Athletes
Student-athletes start this school year with new power in determining their own value as marketers and businesspeople. Progage and Startup Waco have launched a new partnership to support Baylor athletes as they navigate the ever-changing landscape of lucrative Name-Image-Likeness (NIL) partnerships for the first time ever, helping to maximize earnings for the athlete and promotion for the business. The deal leverages Startup Waco’s GXG™ program, which offers entrepreneurial and marketing support to student-athletes, which will help them make the most of their newfound earning potential.
Lauren Harrison, a fifth-year Volleyball starter noted, “Progage is going to be so helpful in connecting the dots and identifying the best brands for us as athletes. I want to make sure the brands I partner with are authentic to who I am.”
In collaboration with Startup Waco’s GXG™ program, Progage will focus on identifying brands and partners, while the incubator focuses on elevating the marketability of Baylor student-athletes through business coaching and resources. Progage is unique in that it has always focused on athletes at all levels of collegiate or professional sports, and not just top-tier athletes and household names. This means Progage can get more deals for more athletes across the board.
The NIL law, enacted on July 1, 2021, gives college athletes the ability to profit off their own name, image, and/or likeness in ways not previously allowed in intercollegiate athletics. The opportunities for student-athletes are vast, but unfortunately, there are a lot of potential unethical partners looking to lure them into shady deals and unfair negotiations.
To identify the best opportunities for Baylor athletes and position them for maximum success, Progage will facilitate both local business opportunities and national partners and negotiate those deals. The goal is a steady pipeline of high-quality offers to benefit both athletes and businesses.
“Our goal is to provide Baylor student-athletes with all the resources they need to be successful,” said Jon Passavant, CEO of Startup Waco. “Engaging Progage really opens doors on a national level. Progage has the experience and connections to put Baylor athletes in front of the types of companies coveted by student-athletes across the country,” he added.
Known for bringing equity and opportunities to athletes at all levels of both collegiate and professional sports, Progage offers corporate connections, as well as marketing and personal branding expertise to these athletes as well.
“The opportunities for student-athletes are almost unlimited, but unfortunately there are also a lot of pitfalls they need to be aware of,” said Kyle Fenner, co-founder of Progage. “While our mission is to continually funnel awesome opportunities from brands who want to invest and believe in them, we will also act as a protector to vet those opportunities that might not be in their best interest.”