SME Branding Selected To Develop Identity for GRAND-AM, ALMS Merger

SME Branding Selected To Develop Identity for GRAND-AM, ALMS Merger

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Nov. 20, 2012) – A key component in the merger of GRAND-AM Road Racing and the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón was announced today, with world-class branding agency SME Branding selected to develop the new identity for the combined sports car series.

“Scott Atherton and I both believe our mandate, since announcing plans to merge GRAND-AM and ALMS, has been to ensure that we get it right the first time,” said GRAND-AM CEO Ed Bennett. “We think we’re well on our way to doing that from an identity standpoint with SME Branding on board.”

The New York-based agency’s client list includes NASCAR, the NFL, NHL, UFC, the New York Yankees, Kentucky Derby, and Madison Square Garden. In this assignment, SME will conduct stakeholder research, develop positioning strategy and produce the name, logo and brand identity for the new series.

“We are honored to be part of this historic moment in motorsports,” said SME Branding Senior Partner Ed O’Hara. “Our process will include key stakeholders from the merged series so that we can get to one holistic concept representing both the excitement and prestige of the series.”

The new branding is expected to be revealed in early 2013.

GRAND-AM Road Racing operates and sanctions the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series, Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge and the TOTAL Performance Showcase. GRAND-AM also sanctions the Ferrari Challenge in North America. Owned by NASCAR Holdings Inc., GRAND-AM is located in Daytona Beach, Florida. With a racing schedule led by the prestigious season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona, GRAND-AM delivers professional sports car racing to key markets throughout North America in addition to being televised in the United States and Canada on SPEED and distributed globally through ESPN International. For additional information, please visit

The American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón is based on the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans. It features multiple classes of purpose-built prototypes and production-based GT cars that race on the same track at the same time. The ALMS holds events annually throughout North America on premier urban street circuits and top permanent natural terrain road courses. The American Le Mans Series has a leadership role in motorsports for the furthering of alternative fuel technology and use. The ALMS was the first motorsports body in the world to embrace an entire suite of alternative energy sources – E10 and E85 cellulosic ethanols, isobutanol, clean diesel and hybrid technologies. For additional information, please visit

SME is a leading strategic brand development and advertising agency serving the sports entertainment industry. Founded in 1989, with offices in New York, Miami, London and Tokyo, SME enjoys a stellar worldwide reputation of creative excellence and thought leadership. Utilizing its highly successful and proprietary brand building process, SME connects fans to brands through emotional identity, messaging and engagement strategies. Clients include the New York Yankees, Kentucky Derby, UFC, Madison Square Garden, Pac-12, Miami Marlins, USOC, NFL, NHL, NBA, MLS, LPGA and NASCAR.

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