Cape Town - SA Rugby on Wednesday welcomed Nashua to its family of partners with the business solutions provider agreeing to an exciting three-year sponsorship of the iconic Currie Cup.
The revamped Currie Cup competition, consisting of nine teams in the Premier Division and six in the First Division, kicks off early next month following on from the qualifying competition, which started in April and still has two rounds remaining.
“This partnership doesn’t only mark a new era in Nashua’s long-standing history of support for South African sport, but is massively exciting for us as it’s the first time that they have gotten involved at this level in rugby,” said Jurie Roux, CEO of SA Rugby.
“In a way, Nashua’s involvement in the Currie Cup completes a cycle that started in 1990, when they became the first sponsor to prominently display their branding on a local rugby jersey - that of the Blue Bulls, who were then still called Northern Transvaal.
“It was a move that changed the landscape of sports sponsorships in South Africa and to have an innovative brand such as Nashua partner with us in the very important Currie Cup competition, is an exciting venture.
“The Currie Cup is where legends are made and most of the current crop of Springboks have earned their stripes in this competition, which dates back to the late 1800s. We’re at a stage in our history where sporting sponsorships are changing and it’s therefore a huge honour for me to welcome Nashua on board as one of our new partners.”
Nashua first got involved in South African sport way back in the 1970s and through their powerful network of franchises nationwide, Nashua offers support wherever possible for local sports clubs and school teams across a range of different disciplines.
“Nashua has always been a keen supporter of local sporting talent,” said Nashua CEO, Mark Taylor.
“Specifically in rugby, from the small community and school rugby teams sponsored by our franchises, to national and provincial sides, we like to believe we’ve played an integral part in the South African sports story. It’s about family, heritage and pride.
“The Currie Cup partnership is a perfect fit for Nashua, a uniquely South African company built on a heritage of teamwork and togetherness. Nashua knows that sport, particularly rugby, brings South Africans together. We’re honoured to have played a role in iconic moments in SA sporting history and look forward to the great moments to come.”
Nashua’s involvement with South African sport is as diverse as it is extensive – they’ve supported heroes from various sports, including Formula 1, boxing, cycling tennis and golf. Nashua is also invested in the development of cricket, with their ‘Art of Fast Bowling’ initiative.
Along with the Currie Cup partnership, 2016 marks an exciting year for Nashua as they embark on a country-wide initiative to elevate rugby skills in over 100 schools through a programme run by their franchise network. Talented players who are recognised through the skills programme may be awarded bursaries in the ICT sector from Nashua, with a view to creating employment in this field.
“My vision is that in the not-too-distant future, we’ll in a position to employ these young stars into the Nashua family,” says Taylor.
“It’s about investing not only in sports skills, but also in valuable ICT skills, so we can give more students a chance at success.”
The Currie Cup kicks off on the weekend of August 5/6, 2016, and most matches will be broadcast on SuperSport.