Kenyan basketball will never be the same again after the Kenya Basketball Federation secured a lucrative five-year Sh100 million game changing sponsorship deal.
Dubai-based businessman Ricardo Badoer, owner of Badoer Investment Ltd, and KBF chairman Paul Otula and treasurer Peter Orero unveiled the sponsorship deal at the Nyayo National Stadium gymnasium during the Kenya men and women verses Ghana Revenue Authority sides basketball matches on Friday night.
Badoer Investment has undertaken to give Kenya Basketball federation Sh20 million annually for the next five years to run the league and national teams beginning with the African Games qualifiers in Kampala next month.
Under the deal, Badoer Investments will also own KBF leagues' broadcast rights through the newly launched digital television station, MadGoat TV (MGTV) as well as an upcoming free-to-air TV station.
MGTV has been streaming live online matches involving National Super League side Wazito and recently acquired broadcast rights for the SportPesa Shield semi-finals matches. The station will now start streaming live basketball league matches.
Badoer has become familiar to Kenyan sports after acquiring National Super League team Wazito, who are on the verge of promotion to the SportPesa Premier League after a poor start to the season. They were relegated last season.
He recently acquired a Sh12 million Mercedes Benz bus for Wazito that sent tongues wagging about how a lower tier league side can own better transport than any of the top league sides.
The sponsorship, according to Otula, will also include providing kits for national senior and junior teams for both men and women, financing the 3 on 3 basketball teams and the University basketball league.
“A lot of basketball talent disappears after school and that’s the reason we want to sponsor the university league to enable us tap that talent at its prime," said Otula.
Otula said the National Classic Basketball League — men's and women's Premier Leagues — will be rebranded. Because of this some league matches will be staged at Moi international Sports Centre, Kasarani for more visibility.
The Badoer Investment logo will appeared on the national team kits and also on balls used in the league according to Otula.
Kenya Basketball Federation treasurer Orero on Saturday said the sponsorship deal was a milestone for the game of basketball.
"It will greatly improve basketball standards as the players will step up on the court to attract scouts especially since the matches will be live on TV," said Orero.
Badoer is scouting for investments in East Africa. He has acquired stakes in Sumac Microfinance, Business Today Media Ltd and Hakika Microfinance in Tanzania.