Vodacom to pull sponsorships?

2010-04-07 22:34

Hendrik Cronjé

Bloemfontein - Free State and Western Province may soon be looking for new sponsors and the Blue Bulls may find themselves in a similar position next year.

Even the continued existence of the Vodacom Cup is in jeopardy as Vodacom apparently intend budgeting for the planned Four Nations and enlarged Super 15.

Argentina will compete with the Springboks, Australia and New Zealand in an enlarged Four Nations.

Negotiations between the cellular phone giant, Free State and WP are at a very sensitive stage and the sponsor is apparently biding its time to see what the South African Rugby Union (SARU) is planning for the Four Nations and Super 15.

Vodacom have apparently indicated to Free State and WP, with whom their sponsorship deals expire in 2010, that they still want the final say on possibly extending the contracts.

The two unions are also being allowed to seek new sponsors.

Free State and WP denied on Wednesday that their sponsorships of several million rands will not be renewed.

Free State president Harold Verster said that Vodacom “are still considering the sponsorships and we will know in time”.


  • GT - 2010-04-08 00:18

    very few slush funds available to meet these sorts of numbers. Cannot understand why Vodacom would ditch the WP -it is the biggest sports team in the Cape by a country mile

  • bulawayo-based-bok - 2010-04-08 00:58

    i hope coca-cola, Absa and Sahara follow suit so the names of the stadiums go back to their rightful titles!!!!........the vodacom cup is great for the depth in our country and they should be able to keep it running.

  • Deon Engelbrecht - 2010-04-08 01:14

    Ja Fokoff sommer sokker toe julle bliksems... Viva MTM

  • just asking - 2010-04-08 01:44

    another anc coupe TO STUFF UP RUGBY?

  • Casualty - 2010-04-08 01:47

    Another coupe by the authorities to stuff up rugby?

  • Russel Todd - 2010-04-08 06:07

    Well then the supporters and fans from these clubs then need to move to MTN in defiance of Vodacom.

  • Gustav - 2010-04-08 07:18

    I suppose VodaCom is not 'SA's greatest rugby supporter' then...

  • Norman du Plooy - 2010-04-08 07:32

    Why would any company want to sponsor the Cheetahs at this stage? Their pathetic record in the S14 does not seem to be improving. I am a big Cheetah supporter but facts ar facts!

  • Abrie - 2010-04-08 07:36

    Cell C, want a few thousand new customers? Sponsor now!! Everyone can keep their numbers...

  • stompie - 2010-04-08 07:37

    Is this not an egg in the face for SA Rugby by Vodacom. Without the Vodacom Cup and talent development ,we will have a preety scrappy 4 Nations for the Boks ..My thoughts

  • Seamus - 2010-04-08 07:43

    ALL sponsorship should stop. The cellphones companies should focus on improving their services, reducing fees, increasing their networks and generally improving their own businesses. The banks such as Absa should be doing the same. The various sports must generate their own funds through ticket-sales,TV rights etc. IF there is any excess, it should be used to benefit the community as a whole e.g. Outsurance and their traffic controllers.

  • Wil - 2010-04-08 07:49

    If I were in Vodacom's shoes, I would ask Harold Verster to resign before I sponsor the Free State. Harold Verster can't manage a corner shop! How can a team that played in 5 Currie Cup finals in 6 years not have money? Vodacom, please make it a conditional sponsorship. Let’s get rid of the old topie and his cronies!!

  • Tom - 2010-04-08 07:59

    I cannot wait to see the back of Vodacom in SA rugby, they are by far the worst 'blue chip' company I have dealt with in this country. Even their JV partners in the DRC cannot deal with these bunch of clowns!

  • Spons Doring - 2010-04-08 08:00

    What about tampax for the Bulls, and Twinsavers for the Cheetahs?

  • Riem - 2010-04-08 08:14

    Maybe Vodacom's bosses wants more bonusses!

  • Just a Fan - 2010-04-08 08:19

    Sponsorship is vital to the development of players. Clubs and franchises will never be able to generate enough income to pay the players, let al;one maintain grounds and equipment...if we want our kids off the street and away from crime then sports development is one of the ways that assist with that. The Vodacom Cup completely devalued Club rugby in SA....let the players get their game time through the clubs - the youngsters will be able to relate to them. The Varisty Cup is fast replacing the Vodacom Cup with being a feeder system for future players.

  • Player 23 - 2010-04-08 08:21

    Gustav - you're right on the money. I'll make a point of moving my business contracts (15) elsewhere.

  • I agree with Seamus - 2010-04-08 08:22

    One company sponsoring 3 teams in the same sport!! And we as clients need to pay for it, whether we are interested in rugby or not...

  • Deon - 2010-04-08 08:28

    I'm not suprised. Vodacom Cup, Vodacom Super 14, Vodacom Stormers, Vodacom Cheetahs, Vodacom Blue Bulls. Talk about wasting money and over sponsoring on one sport. Sponsor one team and one tournament and use the rest of the cash to help other SA sports.

  • Outsick - 2010-04-08 08:30

    At Seamus and Outsurance. Outsurance is ripping off the whole of SA with ridiculous quotes. Speak to any telesaler at Outsurance and he will admit they are a conniving bunch who can go almost 40% lower on their quotes. As for your ideas on sponsorship, you obviously have no idea how marketing works.

  • Cheetha - 2010-04-08 08:31

    Take the big money we can get the real rugbyplayers again....and we'll start winning again....simple as....!!! Cheethas, get your'e house in order....and be consistant for a change... True, everybody hate's Rassie for being in WP, however...but, clearly, he have done something right in Cheetha world....since he leaft the house....they just went down-hill..... ...and Naka, please....when are you gonne stay home, look after your own the players don't have to worry about that anymore...LOl, You're a joke.....???

  • Vat hom Flaffie! - 2010-04-08 08:32

    I guess player 23 is being cut from the squad!

  • Cheetha - 2010-04-08 08:33

    Take the big money we can get the real rugbyplayers again....and we'll start winning again....simple as....!!! Cheethas, get your'e house in order....and be consistant for a change... True, everybody hate's Rassie for being in WP, however...but, clearly, he have done something right in Cheetha world....since he left the house....they just went down-hill..... ...and Naka, please....when are you gonne stay home, look after your own the players don't have to worry about that anymore...LOl, You're a joke.....???

  • jackey - 2010-04-08 08:33

    Some people had to bring in politics into this, Please Deon refrain from comparing soccer & rugby....If Vodacom see more value in soccer so be it then !!!!!!!!!

  • Janx - 2010-04-08 08:35

    @ Seamus: That is very naive my friend. Clearly you are not a sports lover. Post your negativity somewhere else. This place is reserved for those who love sport and appreciate the level of proffessionalism that big corporate sponsorship brings

  • Ace Ventura - 2010-04-08 08:39

    Thr Bulls will not have a problem to get new sponsors. Sponsors will line up for miles to get a piece of the action. I believe Tampax are interested in sponsoring WP.

  • Joe - 2010-04-08 08:43

    How about "VIRGIN" Western Province. Has a nice ring to it!

  • Emile - 2010-04-08 08:58

    It's about time Vodacom evaluates its sponsorship of the Cheetahs. As a corporate giant, one would have expected the termination of the sponsorship a long time ago. I feel for the players, but that pathetic leadership does not deserve a sponsorship from Vodacom. Rather use that sponsorship to build the Watson Spears and attract quality players to the Eastern Cape. I don't care what their supporters have to say, but the Lions and Cheetahs had ample time to justify their presence int he Super 14 and they simply don't deserve to represent SA on the international stage. Both unions have the exact same problem - poor, poor, poor, pathetic management. Even when they were a combined team they sucked. They just combined the two most pathetic administrations in SA rugby and expected what ...? I do hope Vodacom will keep sponsoring the Stormers. At least they are showing this year that something is happening in the Cape. Can't see them changing the Bulls sponsorship as it is SA's prime rugby brand name and has substantial market value.

  • BEB - 2010-04-08 09:02

    I have got to agree with Seamus. The sooner major corporations in this country start to concentrate on their core business, the sooner we will see prices / subscriptions / fees come down to a reasonable levels.

  • Carl Muller - 2010-04-08 09:02

    Call Vodacom and tell them you will stop your contracts with them. Vote with your feet.

  • Agent - 2010-04-08 09:11

    Indirectly we as cell phone users are paying for all of this imagine how low our call rate can be without them spending all these funds.

  • STORMER - 2010-04-08 09:15

    @Pet Defective (Tshwane shackledragger): Keep talking and one day I'm sure you'll say something intelligent...

  • ash - 2010-04-08 09:39

    i agree 100% with Deon Engelbrecht

  • @Jackey - 2010-04-08 09:43

    I wasn't comparing Soccer and rugby, There are many other SA sports that can do with the extra cash.

  • Lefty - 2010-04-08 10:10

    Dis tog vir my opvallend dat die bloggers wat die meeste snert skryf, ook die mense is met die vuilste monde en hulle feite verkeerd het. Deon Engelbrecht hierbo is 'n uitstekende voorbeeld. Vuil mond en dan viva hy MTM - wie is dit? Ek wens Media24 sensor die taal op die blogs.

  • Pikkels - 2010-04-08 10:14

    Wil@7.49, your stmt makes sense and I fully endorse your sentiments. Considering the fact that Grey Boys can produce more players to play all franchises in SA, the question remains: Where are the dept of FS Rugby? Change Management is long overdue in FS. It's no secret that all the grooming and hard work put in, becomes redundant and FS does not have any inclination to justify it's supporters and be an example to the rugby fratinity? Any one stand up and challenge the leadership? I'm sure their will justify the reasons to suit them.

  • Maans - 2010-04-08 10:24

    Nice! Now Harold Verster can go as well and take the useless coaching staff with him....he's being ruining Free state rugby for ages. No more free lunches pal! How can the Reds be so good with half the budget and squad Free State has?

  • deon - 2010-04-08 10:32

    For example - Jukskei!

  • Craig - 2010-04-08 10:44

    Boys its called a bredth strategy. When you are the single largest cell phone network provider in SA you are going to tend to want to own "rugby" in general that includes all leagues within the code. Unions such as the Cheetas need that sort of sponsorship and support, they certainly don't get a huge amount from ticket sales, and i can assure you that we need the likes of smaller unions in particular the Cheetas who produce quality players who then go onto the bigger unions and ultimately play for the Springboks. Ruan Piennar, Jannie & Bismark Du Plessis, Andreis Strauss, to name a few current players. You cannot just pump money into teams that always produce the goods, yes i understand ROI but that is what development is about building from the bottom.

  • antibulls - 2010-04-08 10:47

    I think a new sponser for the Bulls is what they need. I think " Tampax Blue Bulls " sounds good !!! All the hard hat horns will be replaced with " Tampax " Take that Bulls with tongue in the cheek !!!

  • Eugene - 2010-04-08 10:49

    And if Vodacom does not renew their sponsorship contract and another sponsor comes on board..then the poor supporters have to haal uit en wys for new branded shirts..not me because the prices charged every time the jerseys change are also becoming a joke

  • J - 2010-04-08 11:04

    Thank goodness lets hope Player 23 goes!!!!!!!! and maybe our cell phone rates can go down as we pay indirectly for the sponsorship anyway!@

  • Concerneddz68c - 2010-04-08 11:58

    Well i hope the best for both unions as for our union SWD that situation of fighting and slander is another question ? But it seems the smaller unions dont count " wonder where they get there players from ?"

  • Lion fan - 2010-04-08 12:17

    How about this: The DUREX Blue bulls The WP VIRGIN'S The TWINSAVERS Cheetas Ha ha ha ha ha.

  • Lion fan - 2010-04-08 12:32

    How about this: The DUREX Blue bulls The WP VIRGIN'S The TWINSAVERS Cheetas Ha ha ha ha ha.

  • Lion fan - 2010-04-08 12:42

    How about this: The Durex Blue bulls The Twinsaver Cheetas The Tuppeware Western Province Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

  • Leon - 2010-04-08 12:58

    @ Lion Fan - We can't have the Virgin Lions. They get screwed every weekend!

  • Ali - 2010-04-08 13:03

    Scrap the Vodacom Cup - nobody watches it and nobody feels any alignment towards the teams. Replace it with a professional Club Championship. The Varsity Cup has shown us the potential for revitalising community-based rugby.

  • anon - 2010-04-08 13:42

    I really don't think doing away with the sponsorships will bring down any costs. It just frees up more money for the fat cats at the top to get more bonuses. We won't see a penny.......

  • Sipho - 2010-04-08 14:19

    The more advertising/marketing, the more potential for new customers. The more customers, the lower the infrastructure and service cost per customer. Which SHOULD mean lower charges for each customer. More of an art, than a science, but the above logic should work. The real question is if those lower costs/customer, are passed on as lower prices/customer. With the reported profits, make up your own mind.