Kwese deny Mighty Warriors sponsorship

Kwese TV CEO Joseph Hundah

ECONET Media’s satellite television company, Kwese TV has poured cold water to claims that they are now the official sponsors of the Mighty Warriors and any other women’s team on the continent.

Last week, Kwese TV’s Zimbabwe representative Dorothy Zimuto was quoted in the media seemingly pledging her company’s support for the rest of the Mighty Warriors’ 2019 Africa Women’s Cup of Nations (Awcon) qualification campaign.

The Mighty Warriors had staged a sit-in at Zifa Village following their preliminary round victory over Namibia last week.

The Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) had only provided the players with various amounts between $5 and $20 for transport allowances only after the match.

A standoff ensued as the players were demanding at least $800 each as their match fees for both legs against Namibia.

“Kwese refers to media reports related to the sponsorship of participating teams in the 2017 Cosafa Women’s Championships held in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe and wishes to clarify that the company did not commit to ongoing sponsorship of the tournament,”  Kwese said in a statement.

“Kwese only supported the Cosafa women’s teams to the tune of R1 million only for the 2017 Cosafa Women’s Championship winners, and the sponsorship was specifically for the national women soccer teams of South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Kenya.”

In 2005, Econet entered an agreement deal with the Premier Soccer League (PSL) to be the top flight league’s main sponsor.

However, the agreement was terminated a few months into the deal after CAPS United insisted they would continue honouring their deal with shirt sponsor NetOne.

This created a standoff since NetOne is a direct competitor with Econet in the mobile telephone services sector.

Econet then pulled out of the deal with the PSL at the end of the 2005 season.

Last year, Kwese TV was also touted as a potential broadcast partner of the PSL when the previous deal with DStv’s SuperSport ended in December 2017.

The PSL floated a tender for potential broadcast partners and it was largely believed that Kwese TV was part of the bidders.

However, the company distanced itself from the bidding process for the PSL television rights.

“Our attention has been drawn to various reports linking Kwese TV, an entity of Econet Media, to bids for (the) Zimbabwe Premier Soccer League (PSL) television rights. Econet Media wishes to make it clear that it has not submitted any bids nor entered into any negotiations for the said rights and does not plan to do so now or in the near future,” the company said in February this year.

“As part of its strategy in Zimbabwe, Kwese has entered into arrangements with a number of local sports federations and will continue to develop further relationships with sports organisations.

“However, the PSL tender does not fall under the company’s current rollout of products, programmes and activities.”