By Prof Dr Ian Blackshaw
The UK Petrochemicals Manufacturer, INEOS, has signed a six-year sponsorship deal with New Zealand Rugby (NZR), with effect from 2022.
The deal is worth NZ$8 million (US$5.6 million) per year.
INEOS branding will appear on the shorts and training kit of the famous All Blacks team.
INEOS will also become the so-called ‘performance partner’ of the NZR, joining the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team; the Grenadiers Cycling Team; and the Sailing Team UK.
Mark Robinson, the Chief Executive of NZR stated:
“To partner with INEOS and be part of such a unique and diverse global sports performance group is an exciting new venture …..”
INEOS Chairman, Sir Jim Ratcliffe, added:
“The All Blacks have consistently shown the grit and determination needed to perform at the highest level of sport and there will be a lot that we can learn from them.”
The deal, however, is not without controversy.
Greenpeace, the environmental campaigner, had called on the NZR and also the New Zealand Rugby Players’ Association to reject the deal, describing INEOS a “merchant of plastic pollution”.”
Clearly money speaks louder than words!