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KUALA LUMPUR TO STAGE 15th LAUREUS WORLD SPORTS AWARDS

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Laureus World Sports Awards 2014
 
 
KUALA LUMPUR TO STAGE
15th LAUREUS WORLD SPORTS AWARDS
 
 
KUALA LUMPUR, February 5, 2014 - The 2014 Laureus World Sports Awards, the premier honours event in the international sporting calendar, is to be held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on Wednesday, March 26.
 
The globally televised Awards Ceremony, attended by living legends of sport, celebrates the achievements of the greatest sportsmen and sportswomen each year.
 
This is the 15th year of the Laureus World Sports Awards and Edwin Moses, Chairman of the Laureus World Sports Academy, said: “I am delighted that the 2014 Awards is to be staged in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It is an exciting development that Laureus is being held in South East Asia for the first time, enabling the Laureus message to be extended to a new part of the world.
 
Of course this will be a very emotional occasion as it is the first Awards since the death of our Patron, the great Nelson Mandela, and I am sure with the support of everyone in Kuala Lumpur it will be an Awards Ceremony to remember where we can salute today’s sporting heroes and pay tribute to President Mandela.”
 
Among the sporting greats who have been named as winners of Awards over the 15 years of  Laureus have been Usain Bolt, Sebastian Coe, Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Alex Ferguson, Lewis Hamilton, Kelly Holmes, Rafael Nadal, Pelé, Steve Redgrave, Ronaldo, Michael Schumacher, Kelly Slater, Shaun White, Serena Williams and Zinedine Zidane.
 
Guests attending the Awards Ceremony have included His Majesty King Juan Carlos of Spain, HSH Prince Albert of Monaco, David and Victoria Beckham, Sean Connery, Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones, Morgan Freeman, Teri Hatcher, Eva Longoria, Gwyneth Paltrow and Kevin Spacey.
 
YB Dato' Seri Mohamed Nazri, Minister of Tourism & Culture of  Malaysia, said: “Kuala Lumpur is honoured to have been given the privilege of hosting the prestigious 2014 Laureus World Sports Awards and the city looks forward to staging this internationally-renowned event and welcoming a plethora of sporting legends to Malaysia. This is a sports-loving country and I can promise warm Malaysian hospitality awaits all our guests. As 2014 has also been declared ‘Visit Malaysia Year’, there is no better time to visit and experience the multi-cultural heritage, mouth-watering food and unbeatable shopping Malaysia has to offer.
 
We are proud to count badminton world No 1, Dato’ Lee Chong Wei, squash world champion Dato’ Nicol David and 2012 Olympic bronze medalist in platform diving Pandelela Rinong as products of our sports culture. Coupled with international events such as the Monsoon Cup and Formula One Grand Prix, we are supremely confident that Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, is the perfect host for a sporting event with such global significance. I am positive this will be an event to remember for all involved.”
 
Located strategically at the heart of South East Asia, Kuala Lumpur is blessed with rich natural resources, a progressive government and cost-competitive lifestyle. The United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), in its report ‘2012 Tourism Highlights’, ranked Malaysia as the tenth most popular destination in the world for international tourists. In 2013, Lonely Planet, the popular travel guide, ranked Malaysia among the top ten tourism destinations to be visited in the world.
The Awards Ceremony, which is attended by many of the greatest names in sport, past and present, and broadcast to a worldwide TV audience, will take place on the evening of Wednesday, March 26. Further details about Awards attendees, the venue for the Awards Ceremony and the full programme of events will be announced in the coming weeks.
‘Visit Malaysia Year 2014’, aptly themed ‘Celebrating 1Malaysia, Truly Asia’ is the nation's biggest ever tourism celebration. The 2014 Laureus World Sports Awards is a key highlight among the many festivals and activities being staged throughout the year to welcome visitors to the country. The diverse mix of modern vibrant cities, lush tropical islands, picturesque villages and rain forest landscapes makes for an unforgettable visit. Kuala Lumpur itself offers the busy markets of Chinatown, the elegant historic buildings of Merdeka Square and Cesar Pelli’s Petronas Towers which dominate the skyline. Throughout the country, multi-racial Malaysians are ever ready to provide a warm and friendly welcome to all visitors.
At the inaugural Laureus World Sports Awards 15 years ago, in 2000, President Mandela said: “Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. Sport can awaken hope where there was previously only despair.” This has become the philosophy of Laureus and the driving force behind its work.
 
Proceeds from the Laureus World Sports Awards directly benefit and underpin the work of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, which supports more than 140 community sports projects around the world that have helped to improve the lives of over one-and-a-half million young people.
The winners of Laureus World Sports Awards are selected by the ultimate sports jury - the 46 members of the Laureus World Sports Academy, the living legends of sport honouring the greatest athletes of today. 
Members of the Laureus World Sports Academy also volunteer their time to act as global ambassadors for the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, whose mission is to use sport as the means to combat some of the world’s toughest social challenges facing young people today such as juvenile crime, gangs, HIV/AIDS, discrimination, social exclusion, lack of education, landmines awareness and health problems such as obesity. Since its inception Laureus has raised over €60 million to support community sports projects around the world.
 
The members of the Laureus World Sports Academy are: Giacomo Agostini, Marcus Allen, Franz Beckenbauer, Boris Becker, Ian Botham, Sergey Bubka, Bobby Charlton, Sebastian Coe, Nadia Comaneci, Yaping Deng, Marcel Desailly, Kapil Dev, Mick Doohan, David Douillet, Emerson Fittipaldi, Sean Fitzpatrick, Dawn Fraser, Cathy Freeman, Tanni Grey-Thompson, Marvelous Marvin Hagler, Mika Häkkinen, Tony Hawk, Mike Horn, Miguel Indurain, Michael Johnson, Kip Keino, Franz Klammer, Dan Marino, Edwin Moses (Chairman), Nawal El Moutawakel, Robby Naish, Ilie Nastase, Martina Navratilova, Alexey Nemov, Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player, Morné du Plessis, Hugo Porta, Steve Redgrave, Vivian Richards, Monica Seles, Mark Spitz, Daley Thompson, Alberto Tomba, Steve Waugh and Katarina Witt.
 
Laureus was founded by its Patrons Richemont and Daimler and is supported by its Global Partners Mercedes-Benz and IWC Schaffhausen.
 
To see a video of the Kuala Lumpur announcement go to http://youtu.be/UAwsXObZPGI
 
For more information please contact:
 
Virginie Bernon
International Senior Media & PR Manager
Tel: +44 (0) 0207 514 2841    
Photo Archive: www.laureusarchive.com
Website: www.laureus.com
Follow us on Twitter @LaureusSport
 
NOTES TO EDITORS
 
The first Patron of Laureus was Nelson Mandela.  At the inaugural Laureus World Sports Awards in 2000, he said: “Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. Sport can awaken hope where there was previously only despair.” This has become the philosophy of Laureus; the driving force behind its work.
 
Laureus is a universal movement that celebrates the power of sport to bring people together as a force for good.  Laureus is composed of three core elements - the Laureus World Sports Academy, the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation and the Laureus World Sports Awards - which collectively celebrate sporting excellence and use sport as the means to promote social change.
 
The Laureus Academy Members volunteer their services as global ambassadors for the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, which was set up to promote the use of sport as a tool for social change. The Foundation addresses social challenges through a worldwide programme of sports related community development initiatives. Since its inception, Laureus has raised over €60 million for projects which have helped to improve the lives of more than one-and-a-half million young people. The mission of the Laureus Foundation is to use sport as the means to combat some of the world’s toughest social challenges facing young people today such as juvenile crime, gangs, HIV/AIDS, discrimination, social exclusion, landmines awareness and health problems like obesity. The Academy is supported in its work by the members of the Laureus Ambassadors programme, a select group of current and retired sportsmen and sportswomen who have achieved sporting greatness, plus non-sporting personalities who have made significant contributions to the sporting community during their careers. 
 
The Laureus World Sports Awards is the premier global sports awards honouring the greatest sportsmen and women across all sports each year.  The winners are selected by the ultimate sports jury - the 46 members of the Laureus World Sports Academy, the living legends of sport honouring the great athletes of today.  The Awards are presented at an annual Awards Ceremony, attended by global figures from sport and entertainment, which is broadcast to 120 countries and territories.  
 
There is a two-part voting process to find the winners of the Laureus World Sports Awards.  Firstly, a Selection Panel of the world’s leading sports editors, writers and broadcasters from over 120 countries votes to create a shortlist of six Nominations in various categories, including Laureus World Sportsman of the Year, Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year, Laureus World Team of the Year, Laureus World Breakthrough of the Year and Laureus World Comeback of the Year.  Then the members of the Laureus World Sports Academy vote by secret ballot to select the Award winners from the shortlist. The Laureus Academy Members also vote for the Laureus World Sportsperson of the Year with a Disabilityand the Laureus World Action Sportsperson of the Year, the Nominations for which are made by specialist panels. 
 
Proceeds from the Laureus World Sports Awards directly benefit and underpin the work of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation which supports over 140 community sports projects around the world.  The 2014 Laureus World Sports Awards will be held in Kuala Lumpur on March 26.
 
Laureus was founded by its Patrons Richemont and Daimler and is supported by its Global Partners Mercedes-Benz and IWC Schaffhausen.
 
Mercedes-Benz
Mercedes-Benz, the world’s oldest automaker, can look back on a unique tradition. It is the most valuable automotive premium brand which stands for quality, safety, comfort, design and sustainable mobility. Mercedes-Benz enjoys an excellent reputation, particularly in the field of safety. Many pioneering technical innovations that are standard automotive features today were first seen in a Mercedes-Benz car. The Mercedes-Benz engineers will in the future consistently reinvent the automobile – with the same enthusiasm and innovation as Gottlieb Daimler and Carl Benz in 1886. Moreover, Mercedes-Benz has been actively supporting professional and amateur sport for decades and has become established as a dependable partner in the fields of motor sport, football, golf, horse riding and tennis.  Mercedes-Benz is a Global Partner of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation. Since the beginning of the Foundation's operations in 2000, Mercedes-Benz has shared and supported the goals and values of this worldwide charity programme where sports play the core role in the fight against social issues - Laureus has become a vital element of the corporate social responsibility programme of Mercedes-Benz.
 
IWC Schaffhausen
With a clear focus on technology and development, the Swiss watch manufacturer IWC Schaffhausen has been producing watches of lasting value since 1868. The company has gained an international reputation based on a passion for innovative solutions and technical ingenuity. One of the world's leading brands in the luxury watch segment, IWC crafts masterpieces of haute horlogerie at its finest, combining engineering and precision with exclusive design. As a global partner since 2005 and as part of its corporate social responsibility, IWC is one of the driving forces behind the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation. Since 2006, the Swiss watch manufacturer has launched several limited editions in honour and support of the Foundation. These watches are destined to be collector's items as each edition features an exclusive engraving on the back based on a drawing by one child involved in a Laureus project.