SportPesa

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SportPesa
TypePrivate
IndustryLotteries and gaming
Founded2014
Headquarters
Area served
Global
ServicesSports betting
Number of employees
500
Websitewww.sportpesa.com

SportPesa is a sports news technology and sports betting brand with operations in Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, Italy, Ireland, the Isle of Man, and the UK, where it operates in conjunction with TGP Europe.[1][2]

Ownership[edit]

SportPesa in Kenya is owned and operated by Milestone Games, a Kenyan-owned company.[3] In Italy it is jointly owned with RCS Media, the largest media company in that country.[4]

Sports involvement[edit]

SportPesa heavily invested in the development of the local sports leagues and tournaments in Kenya and Tanzania.[5][6][7]

The company had signed agreements to build local and international partnerships in football, rugby, boxing, motorsport,[8] athletics, golf and kabaddi.[9][10][11]

It sponsored various tournaments, among them the 2014 Wambia Memorial Football Tournament in Kakamega, The Francis W. Maingi memorial football tournament in Kitui, the Obulala Football Tournament, Koth Biro Football Tournament and the SportPesa Super 8 Premier League.[12]

With over 100 grassroots teams from Nairobi estates registered to participate, the Super 8 tournament, which was run by Extreme Sports Limited, grew into a full-fledged league in 2016 after financial support from SportPesa. The Super 8 League aimed to improve grass-root football, with a number of players later joining top-flight Kenyan teams.[13][14][15]

In 2021, SportPesa took up the Wazee Pamoja League, as they are known today, which comprises 11 teams whose players are over 33 years old and play throughout the year in a competitive league. [16]

Kenya[edit]

In football, the brand previously supported the Kenyan Premier League, Kenya’s domestic top tier club competition, as well as a key sponsor of the Harambee Stars and Harambee Starlets, Kenya's national men's and women's football teams respectively. This partnership has saw the introduction of linkages with English clubs Everton FC, Arsenal, Southampton and Hull City, where the clubs' management, coaches and players took part in various training programmes and engagements.[17][18][19]

The key focus of the contract with the Football Kenya Federation was to ensure that the country develops as a footballing nation, with the stated mission of qualifying for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

In February 2017 a team dubbed the SportPesa All-Stars, selected from the 18 Kenyan Premier League clubs, became the first-ever team from the country to play in England, where they lost 2–1 to a Hull City Select side at the KCOM Stadium. This partnership was geared towards exposing Kenyan players to the international stage.[20][21][22]

SportPesa also entered into a deal with the Under-20 sides from the Kenyan Premier League to facilitate a tournament that was held during school terms breaks in April, August and December.[23]

At the height of its support to the Kenyan Premier League, the brand invested in a reward and honour programme working closely with a joint panel of SJAK and KPL coaches who selected the best players, coaches and team managers. The highlight of this annual programme culminated in the gathering of the football community for the prestigious Footballer of the Year (FOYA) Awards where winners selected are celebrated, with the Player of the Year winning KSh1,000,000 (approx. USD10,000).[24][25]

SportPesa was also the shirt sponsor of signed Kenya Sevens Rugby team, Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards, two of Kenya's most decorated clubs, as well as Nakuru All Stars, a second division team.[26][27][28]


The company's sponsorship status of teams in Kenya was suspended following the withdrawal of its operating license in July 2019 – the license was reinstated in October 2020 after the brand signed a five-year deal with Milestone Games Ltd which then took over the rights to operate under the name SportPesa.[29]

Tanzania[edit]

SportPesa currently has sponsorship deals with Simba SC and Young Africans SC, two leading clubs in the Tanzania Premier League. The two teams have signed five-year sponsorship deals. Additionally, SportPesa sponsored Singida United FC for a year following their promotion to the Tanzania Premier League.[30][31][32]

South Africa[edit]

In August 2017, SportPesa announced that it has signed a sponsorship deals with Cape Town City F.C. that plays in South Africa's Premier Soccer League (PSL).[33]

Formula 1[edit]

On 13 February 2019 it was announced that SportPesa became the new title sponsor for the Racing Point F1 Team for the 2019 season. The team was officially entered as SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team. On February 17, 2020, Racing Point CEO Otmar Szafnauer announced that SportPesa was no longer the team’s title sponsor due to the company having “had some difficulties in their home market.”[34]

Global partnerships[edit]

SportPesa brand was previously in partnerships with five English football clubs – Everton, Arsenal,[35] Southampton, Hull City.

Everton announced that the partnership with SportPesa would end after the 2019-20 season, after two years of a fruitful partnership that saw the Everton first team make their maiden trip to East Africa when they played a pre-season match in Tanzania and toured Kenya for the first time for another pre season friendly in 2019 - both sold-out matches making history for the two East African nations.[36][37]

SportPesa Super Cup[edit]

In June 2016 SportPesa announced the first SportPesa Super Cup,[38] an eight-team football knockout tournament that featured four teams each from Kenya and Tanzania. The first edition was held in Tanzania where Kenya's Gor Mahia FC emerged the tournament winner.[39] The Winner of the SportPesa Super Cup played Everton FC on 13 July 2017 in the most successful football event in East Africa ever.[40]

Recognition and awards[edit]

In 2016, SportPesa won the Best African Sponsorship Award at the Discovery Sports Industry Awards (DSIA).[41] In 2017, was recognized as a Superbrand,[42] placed 13th in the ranking of the best companies in Kenya.[43] It has also been previously recognised for being among top tax payers in Kenya.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ochieng, Erick (3 February 2014). "Local fans to bet as new sports lottery is launched". East African Standard. Standard Media Group. Retrieved 31 July 2016.
  2. ^ "Pevans East Africa Limited". Retrieved 31 July 2016.
  3. ^ "REVEALED: Multinational millionaires behind SportPesa – Nairobi News". Nairobi News. 29 July 2016. Retrieved 3 July 2017.
  4. ^ "SportPesa acquires majority shareholding in RCS Media's gambling division". SBC News. 18 July 2017. Retrieved 31 January 2018.
  5. ^ "Sportpesa: A Trailblazing Sporting Success". Bizna Kenya.
  6. ^ "SportPesa pledges to invest heavily in development of sports in Tanzania". The Star.
  7. ^ "SportPesa sponsorship: Time for Kenyan players to benefit". Goal.com.
  8. ^ "Rally: SportPesa Team Gears for First Position on This Weekend Outing". WGN.
  9. ^ "SportPesa Premier League it is! KPL unveil betting firm as title sponsors". Nation Newspaper.
  10. ^ "SportPesa Unveiled As Kenya Sevens Shirt Sponsor". Rugby15 News.
  11. ^ "SportPesa Sponsors the 2016 National League". Boxing Association of Kenya.
  12. ^ "Gambling is not illegal. It is your own right! – Kenyan Herald". Kenyan Herald. 30 August 2016. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  13. ^ "SportPesa offers Sh35m sponsorship for Super 8 League". Red.co.ke.
  14. ^ "Super 8 Tournament Breaks Clubs Registration Record". Niaje. 21 February 2015.
  15. ^ "SportPesa Super 8 Tournament to Graduate to a Full League". Standard Media.
  16. ^ "SportPesa's boss Karauri comes to the rescue of former players". The Star. Retrieved 10 June 2021.
  17. ^ "SportPesa Becomes The Kenya Premier League Title Sponsor". Niaje.
  18. ^ "Hull City coaches eye lasting relations with SportPesa AllStars' overall squad". The Standard.
  19. ^ "SportPesa Partners with FKF to Improve Football in Kenya". SportPesa News.
  20. ^ "SportPesa All Stars to Play Hull City Tigers in February". Kenya High Commission in the UK.
  21. ^ "Hull City XI vs SportPesa All Stars". Hull City AFC.
  22. ^ "Hull City beat SportPesa All Stars but Humphrey Mieno scored an historic goal". Goal.
  23. ^ "SportPesa millions for KPL Under-20 Tournament". Soka.
  24. ^ "Kenya: SJAK SportPesa Footballer of the Month Awards Launched". All Africa.
  25. ^ "SJAK, SportPesa to reward KPL player of the month". Gor Mahia FC.
  26. ^ "Gor Mahia and SportPesa officially unveil sponsorship deal". The Standard.
  27. ^ "OFFICIAL: AFC Leopards sign five year deal with SportPesa". Goal.
  28. ^ "Nakuru All Stars land five-year SportPesa sponsorship". Mediamax Networks.
  29. ^ Kamau Muthoni (21 November 2020). "Court order brings SportPesa back to the market". The Standard. Retrieved 21 November 2020.
  30. ^ "SportPesa announces 5-year sponsorship deal with Simba SC of Tanzania". Apantech.
  31. ^ "Yanga to reach final agreement with SportPesa". Azania Post.
  32. ^ "VPL New Boys Singida United Land SportPesa Deal". Sportpesa News.
  33. ^ "Cape Town FC signs shirt deal with SportPesa". 11 August 2017. Retrieved 21 April 2018.
  34. ^ Kalinauckas, Alex. "Racing Point explains SportPesa deal termination". www.motorsport.com. Retrieved 24 February 2020.
  35. ^ "Arsenal announce new partner in Kenya". Arsenal FC.
  36. ^ "Everton To End Its Partnership With SportPesa". www.evertonfc.com. Retrieved 27 May 2021.
  37. ^ "Everton end shirt partnership deal with SportPesa". BBC Sport. Retrieved 27 May 2021.
  38. ^ "Super Cup launched". The Star.
  39. ^ "Superb Gor Mahia thump Leopards to clinch Super Cup". Daily Nation.
  40. ^ "Everton confirms date with Gor Mahia". Futaa.
  41. ^ "SportPesa Wins the DSIA Awards 2016 for Best African Sponsorship Category". SportPesa News.
  42. ^ "SportPesa receives superbrand certification for 2017". The Star.
  43. ^ "SportPesa beats Google, Facebook in Superbrand ranking". Business Today.