By Ameenu Shardow
The Ghana FA have signed an unprecedented $15m sponsorship deal with the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC).
The lucrative sponsorship deal will see the nation’s petroleum exploration body become the headline sponsor of the Black Stars for the next five years.
The deal which was signed on Friday – the day the Black Stars travel to Abu Dhabi to begin preparations towards the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations will see GNPC pay a staggering annual amount of $3m to the Ghana FA.
Chief Executive of GNPC Nana Boakye Asafu-Adjaye explains the rationale behind the bumper sponsorship deal.
“The business case for supporting the Black Stars brand was not a difficult one,” he said at a brief signing-on ceremony in Tema.
“The Black Stars is a very potent vehicle for projecting GNPC’s brand as a dependable partner in oil and gas exploration globally.
“The Black Stars are a perfect fit for GNPC. We both aspire to compete successfully on the global stage in a manner that impacts Ghanaians positively and profoundly.
“We want our youth to draw inspiration from the fact that today, the Black Star are managed fully by a Ghanaian team, led by a Ghanaian coach – himself a former Black Stars player and sponsored by a Ghanaian national co-operation.
“We expect that with this headline sponsorship, the Black Stars will go and win the Cup at this Africa Cup of Nations, go beyound the semi finals at the 2014 World Cup and again win the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations.”
Corporate sponsorship has been largely credited for the heightened performance of the Black Stars in recent years.
Not until the coming of Goldfields Ghana Limited in 2005 that the Black Stars qualified for its first senior World Cup finals in Germany a year after.
The immense financial support again saw Ghana make a second successive World Cup appearance four years later in South Africa.
The mining firm however decided not to extend its relationship with the Ghana FA when the contract expired last year.
Their exit opened the opportunity for the GNPC to take over as the headline sponsor of the Black Stars – one which they took firmly by offering the biggest quantum of sponsorship to the Ghana FA.
Picture credit: Emmanuel Offei