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AmaZulu general manager Lunga Sokhela explains how the club attracts sponsors

Posted: 21 July 2018 Time: 19:00

AmaZulu general manager Lunga Sokhela has explained how the club has managed to attract and retain sponsors in a challenging economic environment.

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Usuthu last week unveiled their new Umbro kit at the depot of long-standing sponsors Spar in Phoenix.

The Absa Premiership outfit have been linked with the retail giant since 1990, even keeping ties after the club's relegation to the National First Division after 2014/15.

Spar's financial support helped AmaZulu buy their way back into the topflight ahead of last season with the purchase of the now-defunct Thanda Royal Zulu's status.

AmaZulu's situation is far from the norm, as most PSL clubs struggle for survival without endorsements. A case in point are Bloemfontein Celtic, who have been put on the market following the loss of MTN as their main sponsors.

Sokhela says the club's long association with Spar is not the only factor that works in their favour.

"It's not just the long history, it's our ability to understand what sponsors want and deliver to them," says Sokhela.

"At the end of the day the sponsor will only sponsor you if it suits them and their business. Spar is in the business of selling groceries. We run many programmes where we push many people to buy Spars' groceries.

"Umbro is in the business of selling merchandise and we are going to have plans of how the merchandise of Umbro is going to be sold. So we understand it's no longer a case of the company just wanting their logo on your shirt; you need to speak to their business.

"So I think that ability we developed over the years makes it easy for us.

"I mean those are not our only sponsors. We've also got Ukhozi FM [vernacular radio station in KZN], we have other media houses. So we have got a full array of sponsors."

Article by: Robin-Duke Madlala
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