Ababu unveils Sh1.6 billion seven year KPL broadcast deal with KBC
Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba unveiled a Sh1.6 billion seven-year Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC) free-to-air sponsorship deal to the 18 Football Kenya Federation Premier League clubs at his Talanta Plaza offices in Nairobi on Thursday, November 30.
Namwamba, who was accompanied by Information Communication and Technology (ICT) Eliud Owalo, announced that the Sh240 million per year deal will see each club receive Sh10 million per season.
Terming the deal as a game changer in Kenyan football, the Cs said local football fans can now watch the selected weekend matches via the national broadcaster whose 11 sister radio stations have also been given the right to commentate the live matches.
“I delayed this deal because I wanted more money for clubs and a team must get something depending on the position it finishes in the league. The position has to be commensurate with what a club gets from this deal,” said Namwamba during the function also attended by ICT PS Professor Edward Kisiang’ani.
“We are providing Sh240 million for a start and that guarantees each of 18 teams a minimum of Sh10 million. If you finish number two it will mean a little more than number seven. The National Super League, Women Premier League and FKF-PL referees are also included in this package and will be paid promptly,” added Namwamba.
The Cs revealed that a package for WPL, NSL, and other lower leagues are in the offing as his ministry targets talent growth via the Talanta Hela programs. He said the live airing of the national secondary school games is the reason why stars like Adrin Kibet and Amos Wanjala, who are excelling with Junior Stars in the ongoing Under 18 Cecafa tournament being held in Kisumu and Kakamega Counties, were identified and picked.
On August 31 this year, FKF signed a Sh1.3 billion seven-year broadcast deal with Tanzania pay TV Azam. According to the deal, Azam acquired exclusive rights to air FKF-PL for an initial fee of Sh145 million a year, with the deal increasing by Sh14.5 million a year.
However, to date, FKF has not made public the amount each club is getting from the deal, which has seen the Tanzanian TV broadcast at least two matches every weekend.
Owalo, an ardent Gor Mahia fan who recently bought the club a team bus, said the deal will see Kenyan players watched far and wide; thus, it is a better marketing strategy for the local clubs.
“Sports today is a major industry for our youths to eke a living and this partnership gives our youth the opportunity to show their talent. Let’s go the extra mile to get sponsorship for the community clubs as we also support the institutional clubs,” said Owalo.
“We also want to witness good governance in football which is a big challenge in this country. Corporates can’t put money in football if there is no good governance. Let’s not get the wrong people in the right positions in the management of football if it comes to FKF elections,” added Owalo.
Mwendwa lauded the sponsorship, saying it gives the winner Sh5 million and Sh11 million to be shared among the teams depending on the position they finish in the league at the end of the season.
The administrator said the deal will increase by Sh15 million every year, and football fans will watch two games on KBC and three on Azam Tv every weekend.
“Those who can’t afford Azam can now tune to KBC. We have never done anything bigger than this in our football,” said Mwendwa.
KBC Acting Managing Director Samwel Maina promised that fans would get entertainment as the media and its 11 radio stations would now be on the Kenya toptier league.
“Our viewership has gone on an upward trajectory whenever we broadcast live events. KBC has entertaining content and football is at our heart and we shall deliver our best,” said Maina.