Pay-television broadcaster Sky New Zealand has furthered its strategy of investing in the sponsorship of domestic sport by agreeing a long-term deal with New Zealand Rugby League focusing on the women’s game.
The sponsorship and support partnership will run through to September 2023, with a specific focus on the Kiwi Ferns, New Zealand’s national women’s rugby league team, along with backing designed to grow the game and its appeal to women and girls throughout the country.
The key elements of the deal include Sky’s support for the new Sky Sport National Women’s Rugby League Competition, which will be broadcast live on Sky Sport and live streamed on Sky Sport Now and Sky Go.
The broadcaster will support a series of festivals and roadshows promoting rugby league throughout New Zealand, while the ongoing support for the Kiwi Ferns will include Sky’s logo being displayed on the playing jersey and other kit for test matches.
In October, Sky struck a deal to become the presenting sponsor of the annual New Zealand Open golf tournament. Sky Sport has been keen to support its sports media-rights portfolio by expanding into sports sponsorship in recent months as it battles with rivals such as telco Spark for eyeballs in New Zealand.
In September, the broadcaster acquired title sponsorship rights for New Zealand’s national women’s basketball team, which is now called the Sky Sport Tall Ferns. Sky Sport is also the title sponsor of the New Zealand Breakers, the Auckland-based men’s team that competes in Australia’s National Basketball League, following a deal that was announced in June.
Martin Stewart, Sky chief executive, said: “Our support for the Kiwi Ferns and women’s rugby league is another example of how we’re going all out to grow and promote every aspect of women in sport in New Zealand, from production and promotion through to playing and performing.”