The US$1.2 million per year sponsorship package unveiled by Delta Beverages for top flight football has triggered yet more debate on whether it is enough to sustain the financially troubled football teams.
The deal will run for three years.
Debate has centered on the US$5 000 the relegated clubs will receive at the end of the season while the champions take home US$100 000. Delta unveiled an improved deal for the Castle lager Premier League where they will inject US$700 000 directly into the running of the league an amount which is exclusive of advertising and administration costs.
The company will pump in a further US$ 500 000 for the Chibuku Super Cup which will be competed for by all 16 topflight teams. But is the league package that has generated interest among footballs fans with some suggesting the money still falls short.
But Delta have maintained that what they have done for the league is sufficient in as much as the league can run and clubs can use that platform to source other sponsorship deals.
The company’s marketing director Stanley Karombo said clubs would have to look beyond the league’s principal sponsors for survival.
“You can never say how much is enough really,” said Karombo.
“However, our sponsorship is meant to facilitate the running of the league, clubs are assured that there is football. Clubs have to attract sponsorship, it’s like that everywhere in the world, clubs do not depend on the league’s sponsorship for survival. Clubs have to take advantage of the value they have for instance the value of that shirt they will be wearing is quite high. We hope that we can have more sponsorship into the league as move ahead.”
The Castle Lager Premier Soccer League has experienced a revolution where most individually owned clubs have sunk to lower leagues while company owned clubs that have a strong financial backing have withstood the tests of a difficult financial environment.
Community teams like Dynamos and Highlanders have been well oiled by their sponsors BancABC whose financial backing has ensured stability at the two giants.
FC Platinum and Harare City are some of the wealthier clubs in the league with the backing of Mimosa mine and Harare City Council