Kaizer Chiefs will receive a percentage in royalties of all sales of kit sold by new sponsors Nike who signed a five-year deal with the Amakhosi, believed to be worth R25-million.
Although the sponsorship was announced at Helderfontein on Tuesday, Chiefs will only start using the specially- designed outfit during the Vodacom Challenge in July and for the time being, will see through the Reebok contract until the end of the current season.
Chiefs stars Doctor Khumalo, Brian Baloyi, Nhlanhla Kubheka, Cyril Nzama and Robert Nauseb modelled the team’s new home and away kit and were joined by Springbok rugby players Breyton Paulse, Andre Vos and Deon Kayser on stage.
Nike, who have been sponsoring the Springboks since 1996, re-affirmed their commitment to the South African Rugby Football Union to kit Amabokoboko until 2003.
Chiefs managing director Kaizer Motaung said in his acceptance speech that looking back at the history of the club, it bears testimony that through hard work, success is achievable.
“Chiefs pride themselves as the leading brand in the country,” said Motaung. “Our long-term objective is to become a global brand and forging a link with Nike and their reputation for bringing unmatched technology to sport kit and innovative marketing takes us a step closer.
“The Nike brand associates itself with winners. When you think of Tiger Woods, Ronaldo, Luis Figo and Michael Jordan – these names are synonymous with success and the Nike slogan of ‘Just do it’ is both innovative and inspirational and complements our famous ‘Love and Peace’ positioning.”
Nike’s executive director Thebe Ikalafeng explained that the new kit designed for Chiefs boasts features such as moisture-management properties which will keep players dry and cool in hot conditions, as well as alternate water-resistant jerseys for wet conditions.
Ikalafeng also revealed that through its Nike Cares Trust, the company has invested over R10-million in soccer development initiatives, among them the Nike Premier Cup international tournament for boys under-14.
He added that some of their social responsibilities include the building of the R2-million state-of-the-art Chris Hani Sport complex in Orange Farm.
“But above all else,” said Ikalafeng, we are equally proud to be associated with the best soccer club in the country as well as the national rugby team.”