The inauguration ceremony of the Coca-Cola sponsored, international standard Aquatic Center at the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) took place on Tuesday, April 4, 2017. Mr. Brian Smith, President Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) Group and Mr. Zoran Vucinic, President Middle East and North Africa (MENA) of The Coca-Cola Company, the chief guests at the event, along with other members of the organisation’s team, were welcomed at LUMS by Syed Babar Ali, Pro-Chancellor LUMS, Prof. Dr. S. Sohail H. Naqvi, Vice Chancellor LUMS, and Abdul Razak Dawood, Rector LUMS and Mr. Shahid Hussain, Member LUMS Board of Trustees.
After the inaugural ceremony, the attendees visited the grand Aquatic Center, a first ever FINA (Fédération Internationale de Natation Amateur) approved indoor swimming facility, with an eight lane, 25-meter length, in a Pakistani university.
At the occasion Mr. Brain Smith, President, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) Group, The Coca-Cola Company highlighted, “For the first time Coca-Cola has invested in an aquatic center and we are proud that we have embarked this investment in Pakistan which is one of the fastest growing markets for our Company. I am deeply humbled and impressed by our persistent partnership with LUMS as it has helped us achieve the vision of our Brand which is the well-being of mind, body and spirit.”
“We are proud that the Coca-Cola Aquatic Center will serve as a facility for national and international water sports competitions as well as be a center stage for the University to develop teams for swimming, water polo and other aquatic sports. We are thankful to Coca-Cola for their support in establishing this facility,” commented Prof. Dr. S. Sohail H. Naqvi. The Aquatic Center is now operational, opening its doors to LUMS students, faculty, staff and alumni.
Pro-Chancellor LUMS, Syed Babar Ali thanked the Coca-Cola management for their generosity and expressed the hope that they will continue to support development initiatives at LUMS.
Coca-Cola has previously supported LUMS in a variety of ways which have included an Endowment Fund for the National Outreach Programme, to sponsor financially disadvantaged students. One such student, Sikander Wattoo, has gone on to graduate from the prestigious Carnegie Mellon University in USA, with the support of this Programme. The Coca-Cola Empower Lecture Series is also an initiative that has taken place at LUMS, aimed at empowering the youth of Pakistan through a series of lectures by inspiring speakers.