Marketing Director of Nigeria Breweries, Franco Maria Maggi, has assured that the recently signed partnership deal with the Nigeria Football Federation is conceived to be permanent.
Maggi made the declaration on Friday at the signing ceremony held at the premises of Nigeria Breweries, Iganmu, Lagos, with the NFF President Amaju Pinnick and NB Plc Managing Director/CEO, Jordi Borrut Bel, in attendance and pledging total commitment of the brewing giant to every letter of the contract which runs for five years in the first instance.
The agreement makes Star Lager the ‘Official Alcoholic Drink of the Super Eagles’ while Amstel Malta is now the ‘Official Malt Drink of the NFF and the National Teams,’ including Russia 2018 FIFA World Cup –bound Super Eagles.
“We are not thinking of five years for this partnership. We are thinking of eternity. It is a dream that we have nursed for a long time. It is the ideal thing for Nigerian Breweries to partner with Nigerian Football. We are keen to win with Nigeria,” Maggi declared before the NFF officials and the gathering of top notch Nigerian football personalities and legends including 10 former captains of the Super Eagles.
By the terms of agreement, NB Plc shall be committing N450million annually to the NFF for the national teams but Mike Itemuagbor, a sports marketing titan who had brokered several relationships for Nigerian Football over the decades, said: the important thing is not just the amount of money being paid as rights fee but also “the activation of the contract, which Nigerians Breweries and ourselves as the Sponsorship Agency are committed to doing in a big way.”
A buoyant Pinnick hailed NB Plc as a torch –bearer of excellence and corporate social responsibility for the several decades it has operated in Nigeria.
“There were other companies that were interested in these categories but once Nigerian Breweries landed, they landed with conviction, with panache and with finality. We are happy to be involved with them and I must praise Pamodzi Sports Marketing chairman, Mike Itemuagbor, as well as Mitchell Obi and Ejiro Omonode for the roles they played in actualizing this wonderful relationship.
“The NFF is delighted to be in this relationship, and we want to assure you that Nigerian Football will meet your expectations all round,” Pinnick said in celebration of the relationship.
Jordi Bel also expressed the excitement of Nigeria Breweries with the partnership.
“We are indeed delighted about this partnership between Nigerian Breweries plc and the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF). This relationship provides us an opportunity to celebrate the true Nigerian spirit that is fuelled by patriotism, passion and desire for victory, through the platform of Football.”
Pinnick, alongside NFF 1st Vice President Seyi Akinwunmi, 2nd Vice President Shehu Dikko and Deputy General Secretary Emmanuel Ikpeme signed a Nigerian jersey which was handed over to Bel, while Bel, Maggi and NB Plc’s Corporate Affairs Adviser, Kufre Ekanem, signed another which was handed to Pinnick. The NFF later presented customized jerseys to the NB Plc’s trio.
Former Nigeria captains Olusegun Odegbami, Henry Nwosu, Peter Rufai, Augustine Eguavoen, Samson Siasia, Daniel Amokachi, Mutiu Adepoju, Garba Lawal and Ann Chiejine, as well as award –winning former Super Falcons’ forward Okunwa Igunbor witnessed the occasion.
Also at the event were NB Plc’s top hierarchy; sports marketing gurus Mitchell Obi (also AIPS Vice President/President for Africa), Ejiro Omonode and Taye Ige; Chairman of the Sokoto State Football Association, Mohammed Nasir Saidu; NFF Director of Communications Ademola Olajire; NFF’s Assistant Director (Finance) Sule Bako; NFF’s Head of Marketing Alizor Chuks; NFF Marketing and Sponsorship Committee member Colin Udoh and; frontline sports editors/managers led by Editors Guild president Tony Ubani.
There were also AIPS Africa 1st Vice President Mourad Moutawaqil; Chris Mbaisi (President, Sports Journalists Association of Kenya/Vice President AIPS Africa); Rita Aligumah (Vice President, Ugandan Sports Press Association) and; celebrated photo –journalist Fliss Mohamed from Tunisia. STA Mobile’s Biodun Jagun and Tokunbo Awoyinka were also there.