BT marks 10 years of sponsoring Welsh rugby
BT has confirmed that it will continue to sponsor the four professional rugby union sides in Wales until the end of the 2023-24 season, marking ten consecutive years as sponsor.
The company has sponsored all four Welsh professional teams – Ospreys, Cardiff Rugby, Scarlets and Dragons – since 2014, making it one of the longest sponsorship deals in the history of Welsh regional rugby.
When the first sponsorship agreement was signed in 2014, the ground-breaking deal used the BT Sport name and promoted support for grassroots, youth and community rugby.
BT said that it, and Welsh rugby, had experienced a lot of change over the last ten years, but that it was pleased to provide “continuity” in its support for professional and community rugby in Wales.
Scarlets Executive Chairman Simon Muderack said: “Speaking on behalf of the four Welsh professional sides, we’d like to express our heartfelt thanks to BT for their ongoing support of the domestic game.
“For the last decade, BT have been there through the highs and lows of Welsh rugby. To have such a well-respected business leader backing the game has meant a lot and all four of us look forward to collaborating on various initiatives and projects to promote Welsh rugby in the years to come.”
During the course of the sponsorship, the BT brand has appeared on player kits, at the clubs’ grounds and the agreement has involved community engagement with the teams.
Community initiatives have included the ‘Mini Judgement Day’ rugby festival, sponsored by BT, which has seen more than 1,000 young players (aged 7+8) from community clubs in all four regions come together for a mini ‘tag’ rugby tournament at the iconic Cardiff Arms Park stadium.
Other initiatives have included an education and mentoring programme with the clubs called ‘Tackle’, to help inspire young people in disadvantaged areas of Wales. There has also been joint charity work including BT and EE volunteers supporting various initiatives including food banks, Christmas charity food parcel drops and painting community clubhouses.
Matt Stevenston, head of sponsorship at BT Group, said: “We’re really pleased to be able to celebrate ten years of our sponsorship and relationship with the four Welsh teams. We believe this is the longest sponsorship in the history of the four Welsh clubs, so it’s great to mark this milestone. BT and Welsh rugby have seen a lot of change in this ten-year period, but we’re proud to have been able to provide continuity in our support over this time.
“We hope our joint charity work and support for events like the BT Community Rugby festivals has made a difference and helped inspire a new generation of players and supporters.”
BT Group has a significant presence in Wales, both as a major employer and a leading provider of broadband and mobile connectivity. It currently employs around 4,000 people across Wales and is about to open a brand-new office and regional hub in the centre of Cardiff.
EE, part of BT Group, is also the lead sponsor of Wales’s national football teams.
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