“That’s madness, dude,” my colleague said when I shared my idea with him. “It will never work in Latvia, people are not ready for it and they won’t be for a long time ...”
It was January 2020, and at that moment no one could imagine that in a couple of months the world would be paralysed by a deadly virus, followed by a brutal war in Europe that would threaten all civilisation. If I had known, probably I would have agreed with my colleague — madness.
But we did not know! We jumped into the ocean and started swimming, despite all the storms and the waves they caused. And today MVP is the most subscribed sports media in Latvia.
Why is that?
That would be a question for the more than 4,000 people that have decided to become readers of MVP in the past two years. I would like to believe that this is a story about vision, because it all started with that vision way back, much earlier than in 2019 or 2020.
Twenty-five years ago an idea was born — about a new kind of sports journalism. Not only informative but also analytical, non-complimentary, and critical. Subjectively direct and cognitive, one that captures the personalities and regularities. This vision has survived through change and developed with time, and the dynamics and habits of modern society have dictated every step of the way.
Changing the format with the times
What started as a black-and-white newspaper in the 1990s continued as a glossy magazine after the turn of the century and has now organically found the setting where it is the easiest to reach the readers — in their pockets. Always by their side.
In other words, MVP is not only a beginning of something new, it is also a continuation — a story about almost a quarter of a century of experience, reputation, and personalities. The team of authors is also the first cornerstone of MVP.
The most professional sports journalists in Latvia, are creators well-known to the audience, and their competence is beyond doubt. In journalism, power lies with the people who create the content.
The second cornerstone that allows us to build our success story is partnering with the Delfi brand. Stable, solid, ambitious, and courageous — a combination that endows it the status of a market leader throughout the Baltics, and in the media environment, it is easy for everyone to associate it with our chosen name: MVP.
MVP is an acronym that encrypts a very significant sports world denotation — Most Valuable Player. This abbreviation is already rooted in the Latvian sports vocabulary, and sports enthusiasts no longer require a more detailed explanation.
MVP — simply the most valuable! We are aware that this is an ambitious goal, to not only lift but also carry this name. But it has always been our belief that goals should be set high. If we work together with the most valuable in the media business and tell about our most valuable in sports, we have to set our bar high and also let our readers feel that they are the MVPs.
Creating valuable content
When creating the content of MVP, our goal is to be a modern sports media company that offers quality, professional journalism, and storytelling.
The focus of the MVP team is not everyday news, figures, and results, but analytics of events and processes, in-depth conversations with people in the sports environment, discussions, stories, opinion columns, portraits, and research of problem situations.
With the growth of our strength and capabilities, we have taken the first steps in creating high-quality video content and are currently working on other modern visual expressions such as animations and infographics. View from an unusual angle, insight, perseverance, and direct language — this is our calling card, which allows us to be different, and we do not deviate from that.
Sports in Latvia is not a rose garden. We don’t have a lot of world-class stars, we don’t have a lot of success stories, and the stands do not gather thousands of fans in our football or basketball matches.
Businesses and human well-being have been shaken by the virus and war, and surveys show that public confidence in the media is far from high. Although MVP was born and raised during a challenging time, in circumstances of constant turbulence, I see it as a temper that only makes us stronger. This is just the beginning of the road.