Premier league sponsors broke



MASERU – Two big companies who used to sponsor the country’s elite football league cup competitions will not renew sponsorships. According to the Premier League Management Committee (PLMC)’s Communications and Marketing Manager (CMM), Qamako Mahao, both Matekane Group of Companies (MGC) and the Lesotho National Insurance Group (LNIG) cited the main reason for not renewing sponsorships for the MGC Sports Extravaganza and LNIG Top-8 Cup financial constraints borne by the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Mahao, however, said this did not mean the MGC and the LNIG were totally out of football. “This doesn’t mean both companies are totally out of the Premier League sponsorships data,” said Mahao in an interview with Public Eye yesterday. “It is only that this time around when we have to play their competitions they are not in a financial position to give us assistance.”

Mahao further said: “It doesn’t mean they will no longer sponsor sports activities. “According to them, when the business robust they will be back in full force to sponsor sports activities.” But Mahao admitted that the temporary withdrawal of the two companies from sponsoring football would definitely affect the development of the beautiful game in the country.

“It is going to affect us negatively but what Basotho should understand is that this is the impact of Covid-19 in sports. “We are fully aware that the large part of the last year, financial year of the companies did not go well with business because were under lockdown.” Mahao said as a result, there’s no way companies could afford to sponsor sports activities like they used to do before the Covid-19 pandemic.

“So when companies are not generating good business, there’s no way they could afford to sponsor each and every activity which they supported prior to the Covid-19. “So, basically we are only feeling the impact of the Covid-19 in sport now and football being the largest sport will be the most affected sport because it is very popular, and also because football is the most sport.”

In their circular to the Premier League clubs, PLMC highlighted that MGC and LNIG made them aware that their financial allocation for the current quarter did not cater for the competitions. “PLMC had a meeting with the Matekane Group of Companies that sponsors the MGC Sports Extravaganza that was anticipated to be held in March, and also (with) the Lesotho National Insurance Group ‘Hollard’ that has been esteemed sponsor of the LNIG Top-8 for nine (9) years in the hope of renewed (renewing) partnership (s) after two terrible years without the tournament due to the prevailing circumstances,” reads the circular.

“Both companies commended PLMC for their insightful proposals and interest for a good course. Unfortunately, we were made aware that the financial allocation of their current quarter does not cater for (the) competitions.” The circular further reads: “Doing this would cost the company (nies) a loss which is really huge.”

PLMC, however, also told the clubs that both LNIG and MGC would still like to continue with the sponsorships had it not because of the hiccup. “In all honesty, they really they really wanted to sponsor their respective tournaments as per their capacity, but they reiterated that they are bound to follow the financial policies of their organisations, to make it stable for some time.

“PLMC (therefore) regrets to inform you that because of the reasons mentioned above, (that) there will be no MGC Sports Extravaganza and the LNIG Top 8.” Both the cup competitions last took place in 2020, with the LNIG Top-8 Cup having not been played to the finish because of the Covid-19 lockdown. The lockdown had also forced the 2019/2020 Premier League season to be ended prematurely.






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