Gor Mahia and Sportpesa officially unveil sponsorship deal

By Elizabeth Mburugu: Saturday, March 5th 2016 at 08:40 GMT +3 | Football
Gor Mahia Patron Raila Odinga (left) and Sportpesa’s CEO Captain Ronald Karauri unveilling the sponsorship. [Photo: Elvis Ogina]

Gor Mahia and betting company SportPesa yesterday unveiled their five-year partnership. The sponsorship was officially announced at the Nairobi Intercontinental Hotel.

The 15-time Kenyans champions have been struggling financially since the withdrawal of Tuzo in 2014 and this windfall could put their financial position in good stead.

This comes barely three days after the same betting firm unveiled another multi-million five-year sponsorship deal for their arch-rivals AFC Leopards. Gor chair, Ambrose Rachier, was delighted that the club had finally secured financial aid after struggling to get corporate deal on board.

“It has been tough since our last sponsor pulled out. Corporate bodies shied away from us because they feared to associate their brands with us because of hooliganism,” said Rachier.

Rachier referred to the partnership as a marriage and urged the club’s management and fans to shun wrangles and hooliganism and guard the SportPesa brand. “I call on the management of the club and our fans to behave better because no one likes a noisy marriage. This marriage is scheduled to last for five years, but it is my desire that the period ends in renewal and a new marriage certificate,” he said.

SportPesa CEO, Captain Ronald Karauri, urged the club management to be transparent and accountable with funds. “We expect transparency and accountability on your part in the management of the funds. We look forward to preserving this marriage through a mutual and rewarding relationship,” Karauri said.

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Karauri, however, did not reveal the actual figures involved in the sponsorship but divulged that it was more lucrative than the one offered to Ingwe due to Gor Mahia’s status as champions. He urged Gor Mahia management and fans to control hooliganism for the growth of Sportpesa and the club.

Club patron former Prime Minister, Raila Odinga, thanked SportPesa for the sponsorship. “This is a historic occasion, witnessing the marriage between Gor Mahia and Sportpesa. I thank the sponsors for showing interest and also sponsoring not just the league but two clubs and the Super 8 cup. I believe that the journey to success for Kenyan football has just began,” he said.

Raila also warned against hooliganism. Football Kenya Federation president Nick Mwenda said there are plans to build a stadium for Gor Mahia in Kasarani.

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