The Kenya Premier League (KPL) is now SportPesa Premier league. SportPesa is the official title sponsor of the Kenya Premier League in 2015. The popular East African sports betting firm replaced East African Breweries in August 2015 in a deal with KPL that will run for four and a half years.
The deal with East African Breweries (EABL) ran for four years from June 2012. During that time, The Kenya Premier League was officially known as the Tusker premier League – after the popular Tusker brand produced and marketed by EABL.
Now that SportPesa East Africa are the new sponsors, football fans across Kenya can hopefully expect a brighter future for the local league, and by extension the National football team, Harambee Stars. Prior to the KPL deal, SportPesa has been a major sponsor of several sports events in Kenya.
This major deal is reportedly worth Ksh 80 million per year. It puts SportPesa at the heart of Kenyan football. Football is the most popular sport in Kenya, way ahead of track events. Judging by the current online betting craze on SportPesa Jackpot matches, this is an excellent deal for the betting company.
SportPesa East Africa to Sponsor Kenya Premier League
The KPL sponsorship deal is reported to be on a 10% annual increase. This means that by the end of the four years (2019), SportPesa will have paid over Ksh 360 million. KPL will use the sponsorship money to grow the sport. The funds will also help strengthen both the local clubs and the national league.
A strong Kenyan Premier League will boost the poor performance of our National team in regional and continental football competitions. It will also help revive the Kenyan dream of qualifying for the World Cup. What is that saying Kenyans love to say nowadays about dreams? That all dreams are valid!
Football is, perhaps, the most well funded sport in Kenya. The popular betting firm will now support the sport that enjoys most support in Kenya (Read: How to win SportPesa jackpot). The title of official sponsor carries both bragging and branding rights.
Several commentators are however urging a change of focus by the SportPesa Premier League managers. A long-running complaint in most Kenyan soccer clubs and the national team is that football players are a neglected lot in Kenya.
The Kenyan Premier league is composed of the top 16 football clubs in Kenya. It follows the relegation model. Worst performers as per the Kenya Premier League standings are relegated at the end of each season. New clubs are elevated. This maintains competitiveness among football clubs. It also ensures the presence of a few new clubs in the Kenya Premier League table at the start of each season.
The KPL sponsorship deal will only help to grow the biggest sport in the world if the funds reach the individual players. Kenyans have a right to expect better Kenya Premier League results. We pay taxes to maintain the sport. In addition, it is important to channel some of the SportPesa sponsorship money to uplift the living standards of the players. After all, why bite the hand that feeds you?