The Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) has reiterated that the broadcast rights deal signed with StarTimes was not just the only offer it received at the time but the best negotiated partnership that came after over six years of the league not shown on television.

Hon. Gbenga Elegbeleye made this submission in response to a publication that suggested that the NPFL snubbed an offer of $11million proposed by a shadowy character.

“When the Interim Management Committee (IMC) which I headed came on board, there was not a single sponsorship for the league but we later got an investment partner in GTI that guaranteed N1billion for the season”, Elegbeleye stated.

He recalled that amongst several other terms of reference, the IMC was mandated to secure television broadcast for the league.

“It is on record that the last effective broadcast partnership the NPFL had was with SuperSport and it was terminated in 2016. Thereafter the league went on without proper broadcast partner until we signed Propel Sports Africa for streaming and shortly after, StarTimes for Direct to Home Satellite broadcast.

“These deals were not signed overnight but took painstaking negotiations that lasted for months because we wanted to make sure it was the right thing to do”, explained Elegbeleye.

He said that the NPFL had at the outset insisted that it was open to offers and actually knocked on the doors of several corporate organisations pitching sponsorship of the league.

“We spent time and personal resources travelling to court Corporate Nigeria to sponsor the league with our investment partners, GTI and we invested in efforts to rebrand the league. A consultant was hired for venue branding which offers in-stadium exposure to our potential sponsors and a website was also built for viral exposure. So, where was this phantom $11m dollar briefcase offer all the time”, queried the NPFL Chairman.

He added that the IMC wooed SuperSport with a view to bringing the South African broadcast outfit back to the NPFL.

“We couldn’t have rejected any offer when we were practically seeking to entice SuperSport back to the extent that we succeeded in bringing them to broadcast the 2022/23 Super 6 Playoff”, continued Elegbeleye.

He urged the public to be wary of parasitic characters that thrive on controversy to stay relevant.

“The NPFL is still very much open to listen to offers of partnership in other areas from well-meaning and credible Sports Marketing companies”, Elegbeleye said.

GTI, as the League Investment Partner guarantees to provide funding of N10billion over ten years which ensures fund for the cost of organising the league including match officials payment and winning prize money.

David NPFL
May 30, 2024
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