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Bank, Spanish goalie join forces to boost underserved communities
BBVA Compass, soccer star Iker Casillas announce launch of sports and achievement academy
- Sports and Achievement Academy is a joint effort between BBVA Compass,
the Realmadrid Foundation and the International Studies Foundation
- After-school pilot program will be at Houston’s Eliot and Rusk elementary schools
HOUSTON – Just days after he anchored Spain's national team in its electrifying victory in the European championship, international soccer star Iker Casillas — with BBVA Compass and the Realmadrid Foundation — announced today the upcoming launch of the Sports and Achievement Academy at Houston's Rusk and Eliot elementary schools.
The news was announced at a press conference at BBVA Compass Stadium.
The academy is a joint effort between BBVA Compass the Realmadrid Foundation, and its U.S. representative, the International Studies Foundation – the group which is also responsible for the implementation of the school in Houston. The academy will function as an after-school pilot program that combines sports and educational opportunities in underserved communities.
“BBVA Compass' work with the Realmadrid Foundation on the Sports and Achievement Academy aligns perfectly with our vision to build a better future for the people in our communities, especially children,” said Mark Montgomery, Houston city president for the bank. “Soccer is a universal sport, after all, and someone like Casillas — who has achieved so much and is inspiring to so many in every corner of this world — represents the sport's ability to bring people together to do great things.”
The Sports and Achievement Academy is designed to improve children’s academic performance by providing both social support and tutoring in key subjects. It is devised for schools with limited resources.
“The Realmadrid Foundation has a vital and strategic mission. In the last several years, thanks to the commitment and support from so many madridistas, we have made it a hallmark of our identity of which we can be truly proud,” said Julio González Ronco, managing director of Realmadrid Foundation. “Real Madrid, through its Foundation, has undertaken and assumed the goal and commitment for social integration and development around the world. Real Madrid is a legend of soccer and that power has provided us a unique capacity to cross borders and reach common values that can help the most disadvantaged people.”
The announcement comes as part of Casillas’ 2012 tour of Houston and Venezuela as brand ambassador for BBVA, the parent company of BBVA Compass. While in Houston, Casillas also hosted more than 100 children at a soccer clinic.
“As BBVA’s brand ambassador and a player for Real Madrid, I’m proud to bring together these two very important parts of my life in a project that promotes the values of teamwork, effort and fair play to children in Houston,” Casillas said.
Casillas is the goalkeeper for Spain’s national soccer team, which won its second consecutive European championship this year. It also won the 2010 World Cup. No team has held so many important trophies at once.
“As we just saw with the Spanish national soccer team’s European Cup win, Spain is capable of great things,” Casillas said. “So is BBVA, a strong and stable global bank which does good work and will continue to do good work.”
About BBVA Group
BBVA is a customer-centric global financial services group founded in 1857. The group has a solid position in Spain, is the largest financial institution in Mexico and has leading franchises in South America and the Sunbelt region of the United States. Its diversified business is geared to high-growth markets and relies on technology as a key sustainable competitive advantage. BBVA ranks among the leading eurozone banks in terms of ROE and efficiency. Corporate responsibility is at the core of its business model. BBVA fosters financial education and inclusion, and supports scientific research and culture. It operates with the highest integrity, a long-term vision and applies the best practices. The group is present in the main sustainability indexes.
About BBVA Compass
BBVA Compass is a Sunbelt-based financial institution that operates more than 710 branches, including 369 in Texas, 93 in Alabama, 79 in Arizona, 65 in California, 45 in Florida, 38 in Colorado and 21 in New Mexico. BBVA Compass ranks among the top 25 largest U.S. commercial banks based on deposit market share and ranks among the largest banks in Alabama (2nd), Texas (4th) and Arizona (5th). BBVA Compass has been recognized as one of the leading Small Business Administration lenders and was named retail bank “Brand of the Year” by a Harris Poll EquiTrend® study in 2011. Additional information concerning BBVA Compass can be found on our website, www.bbvacompass.com.