Spotika accuses AFC Leopards of reneging on deal and ‘running to’ Betika
Local betting company Spotika has denied breaching a Sh60 million pre-contractual agreement it signed with 13-time Kenyan football champions AFC Leopards, adding a new twist to the pre-sponsorship agreement that could throw the plans of one of Kenya’s most successful teams into disarray.
On Thursday, Spotika claimed that as soon as both parties signed the pre-contractual agreement on June 24 in Nairobi, AFC Leopards went behind their back and started negotiating another deal with a rival gaming company.
In an interview with Nation Sport, Spotika’s Marketing Manager, Alfred Otieno, absolved the company from blame, saying they learnt that AFC Leopards were negotiating with Betika, and were planning to pull out of the agreement soon after receiving the remaining Sh2 million.
“When AFC Leopards officials realised that Gor Mahia had got a deal worth a higher amount of money from another company, they (Leopards) went behind our backs and started negotiating with Betika so as to get what they believed could match what Gor Mahia got from their new sponsor. I understand they have penned a three-year sponsorship deal, but I don’t know the amount involved,” said Otieno.
Gor Mahia penned a three-year deal worth Sh229.5 million with betting firm Betafriq on July 12, just two weeks after AFC Leopards had signed the pre-contractual agreement with Spotika.
“We couldn’t not give them (AFC Leopards) money after learning of this development because it was evident they were not with us. They are forgetting they came to us when they were desperate, with nothing in their bank account. Even then, we have helped them more compared to the brand marketing they are claiming to have done for us,” added Otieno.
On Thursday, AFC Leopards Secretary General Gilbert Andugu announced the termination of the agreement in a statement posted on the club’s social media platforms. Andugu claimed that Spotika had failed to remit Sh2 million to the club’s account by July 24 as per the pre-contractual agreement.
Spotika had on July 1 paid ‘Ingwe’ Sh2 million as per the agreement, with an agreement that the balance of Sh2 million would be wired to the club’s account when it fell due. At the time, Leopards acknowledged receipt of the money at Camp Toyoyo Grounds in Nairobi.
On Thursday, Otieno said Spotika was waiting for direction from its lawyers after formally presenting a case against Leopards at the Betting Control and Licensing Board (BCLB).
Efforts to reach AFC Leopards officials to verify claims that the club has signed a parallel sponsorship agreement with Betika proved futile as they officials did not pick phone calls and did not respond to short text messages.