Grandstand was the New Zealand importer and distributor of the Sega SC3000 computer. Company Director, Leslie Kenyon, had previously used the Grandstand name to sell electronic games in the U.K. through his Adam Imports business, putting the name on everything but the name brands like Sega for which they were the agents. There was a big sports TV show in England called “Grandstand”, and reasoning that games were sporting-type leisure products, the well-known football player Kevin Keegan was recruited to promote Grandstand products on TV.
After emigrating to New Zealand in 1980, Kenyon had not intended to continue the business. Then he met the toy importer, Bill Fenton, and they decided to get together and use Kenyon’s contacts in Asia to bring in consumer electronics for handheld games. The Sega agency was won on the basis of past connection in the U.K.
Because the Sega computer was distributed in very few other English speaking markets, there was little in the way of software for it. Grandstand, therefore, developed and published a range of software, and also set up a magazine, Sega Computer, which was a kind of ‘club’ that users could subscribe to. Like other magazines, Sega Computer published programming tips and tricks, type in code listings, and advertised the contact details of local user groups around New Zealand.