Canadian entrepreneur Sylvan Adams has taken his passion for Israel, a country he immigrated to roughly four years ago, and getting behind various global events to raise the country’s profile in entertainment.
“After a very successful business career and living my entire life in Canada, 3 years ago my wife and I decided to make Aliyah, I’ve decided to devote the next chapter of my life to promoting this country. And I’m very proud to do it,” said Adams at INTV today.
Aware of Israel’s cycling culture, the Ambassador at Large for Israel brought the 2018 Giro d’Italia to the country, reportedly investing $80M for the event. It was the first time the Italian cycling tournament took place outside Italy. Israel hosted the first three days of the three week event, which is the No. 4 most watched sporting event in the world per Adams. In his 40s when Adams took up cycling, he became a world time-trial champion and in November, 2017 won the World Masters Championship in Manchester.
“My experience with first-time visitors to Israel, they’re almost universally shocked and surprised because Israel is not what they expected. The journalists here have to file stories, it’s not very interesting to say the sun rose and we had blue skies and the sea was tranquil, usually their stories are of the negative variety. And people have this tendency to be surprised. They come here and they see the country is open, tolerant, liberal, democratic, and most of all, safe. This is something that a bike race can show over three days in a massive way, and close to a billion watched the Giro here in Israel, and it was like having 1 billion first time visitors to Israel and experiencing it themselves,” said Adams.
Adams is also bringing The Eurovision Song Contest to Israel, and has been in talks to bring Madonna to the country for an appearance.
Says Adams, “The Eurovision is a massive thing, it’s not very well known in North America, it’s where the group ABBA was discovered, last year Israel won, Tel Aviv will be hosting this year’s contest, this is another massive event reaching regular people, it will show Israel in a favorable light and I’m involved in this project as well, I’m not just about sporting events, we’ve reached out to Madonna to try to add some glitz to the event and create more interest, it’s looking very good that she’s going to participate.”