Rock band and IT company. These two phrases aren't often uttered in the same sentence.
But Menlo Park-based Baynetwork, Inc's. official sponsorship of the band KiWi Time is now combining the two.
KiWi Time, whose members hail from the Eastern European country Belarus, is composed of childhood friends Anna Makovchik (Vocals, Keyboard), Vlad Kukharchuk (Drums) and Mikalai Skrobat (Guitar) and Yoga Shyp. The network hardware equipment company's Chief Operating Official Yuriy Petushkov stumbled upon the band while Facebooking.
Instead of reaching out to potential clients through traditional marketing tactics such as direct mailers, Baynetwork, Inc. execs decided to take a chance and say they're with the band.
"Most companies give money; they write a check," Petushkov said. "We want to be hands-on and like to talk to people and learn things," he said.
Since meeting the band and deciding they like the way they move, Baynetwork, Inc. execs have donated a van and a new guitar to the group. Guitarist Yoga Shyp had been using a glued together guitar to create the group's lo-fi, bohemian rock sound.
KiWi Time band members said that they will use the support to work with a producer in a studio in San Rafael, California. They said they have fewer limitations now and higher quality recordings.
"It's much easier when you have support," Shyp said. "Before you had huge music companies trying to build small bands. This collaboration is something new," he said.
Baynetwork, Inc. CEO Yuri Petushkov said he has acted as a type of business mentor to the artists, but emphasizes that he doesn't have to push them to practice because they are very self-motivated.
This band sponsorship is one of Baynetwork, Inc. unorthodox advertising marketing tactics that kicked off in April. Aside from the musical sponsorship, they've also acted as a benefactor to the Hacker Dojo and Hands on Silicon Valley.
The company is currently looking for local Little League teams and schools to sponsor.
KiWi Time band will be playing a free show at Cafe Du Nord in San Francisco on Wednesday night, RSVP for tickets here.
Visit their Facebook Page to hear what they sound like.
[Originally appeared at Patch]