Collin Matiza Sports Editor
ZIMBABWEAN swimming icon Kirsty Coventry has now turned herself into a fully-fledged international sporting brand. Coventry (32), a seven-time Olympic Games medallist, recently went into a partnership with an American health technology company, LifeFuels, which will see her promoting its nutritional products in the United States and around the world.
According to reports from Reston in Virginia, United States, LifeFuels will officially launch the Smart Nutrition Bottle, the first smart water bottle that stores, dispenses and tracks daily nutrition through a customisable beverage system, this week at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES).
The launch coincides with the announcement of LifeFuels’ partnership with two of the world’s top athletes: seven-time Olympic medallist and World Champion swimmer Coventry of Zimbabwe and 2014 Olympian and World Cup Champion Freestyle Aerial Skier Mac Bohonnon.
Coventry is already the Brand Ambassador of Zimbabwean mobile service provider Econet and she has now been engaged by American company LifeFuels ahead of the official launch of its Smart Nutrition Bottle.
LifeFuels’ Smart Nutrition Bottle, a 2016 CES Innovation Award honouree in the Fitness, Sports, and Biotech category, incorporates an innovative lid that houses five interchangeable FuelPods filled with vitamins, nutritional products and flavours, allowing users to tailor their water to suit their specific lifestyles.
Syncing with a smartphone, the bottle’s advanced technology activates the pods with the touch of an app; when paired with activity trackers, it correlates changes in athletes’ intake to their performance, suggesting a fuel boost or additional hydration accordingly.
“LifeFuels wants to change the way people manage nutrition. We developed the Smart Nutrition Bottle to make it easier for consumers to accomplish their nutrition goals by connecting what they’re already familiar with: a water bottle, a smartphone and nutritional products,” said Jonathon Perrelli, co-founder and CEO of LifeFuels. “Partnering with top athletes like Kirsty Coventry and Mac Bohonnon, who are passionate about improving health through innovation, will help us elevate the way people stay nourished while on the go.”
Coventry and Bohonnon, according to reports from Virginia, are partnering with LifeFuels in the development and promotion of its core products. Both athletes will work closely with the LifeFuels product team to ensure the Smart Nutrition Bottle and LifeFuels app incorporate features both established and aspiring athletes need to optimise their performance.
“As an elite athlete, I rely on good nutrition and hydration to fuel my system, and it’s vital that I receive the perfect balance of vitamins; the Smart Nutrition Bottle makes this possible,” Coventry was quoted as saying from her base in the United States.
“As I prepare for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics, I am excited to have LifeFuels as a part of my entourage.”
The Smart Nutrition Bottle will be displayed at the LifeFuels booth for the entirety of CES, taking place from yesterday (January 6) through to Saturday in Las Vegas. In addition, it will be displayed at two separate events within the show: CES Unveiled Las Vegas (this last Monday) and the CES Innovation Awards Showcase from yesterday through to this Saturday.
But it is the newly-found partnership between Coventry and LifeFuels that will boost the former’s image ahead of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games in Brazil in August. Coventry is set to compete in her fifth straight Olympic Games after having made her maiden appearance at the world’s biggest sporting showcase as a sprightly 16-year-old Dominican Convent High School’s pupil at the 2000 Sydney Games in Australia.
Since then, Coventry has won a record seven Olympic Games — two golds, four silvers and one bronze — for Zimbabwe at the 2004 and 2008 Games in Athens, Greece, and Beijing, China. This has seen her turning into a global sporting icon as in 2012, she was elected to the IOC Athletes’ Commission.
She will serve as an IOC member for eight years and that will be until 2020.