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Ospreys agree lucrative extension to BLK kit deal

Welsh Pro12 rugby union club Ospreys has agreed a five-year extension to its kit deal with Australian sportswear company BLK and has signed a one-year extension to its sponsorship agreement with pensions and investment specialist, WPS Investment Group.

The Ospreys initially committed to wear BLK playing and training kit from the start of the 2014-15 season until the end of 2016-17 in a deal described at the time as the single most significant commercial partnership in the region’s history.

The UK licence for BLK Sports has this year been acquired by four British-based entrepreneurs and the Swansea-based club said their “professionalism and enthusiasm” convinced it to renew the association for a further five years. Ospreys has described the new agreement as a multi-million-pound deal.

In addition to the senior team, BLK will continue to supply the regional age-grade and development teams, as well as an extensive range of supporters’ wear.

Ben Houchen, chief executive of BLK United Kingdom, said: “BLK is the fastest growing sportswear brand in the world; Ospreys are a powerhouse of Welsh rugby and we share a vision and ethos that drives us to be the best we possibly can. Acquiring the BLK licence for the UK represents a significant investment for myself and the team and for one of the major players in rugby to demonstrate their trust and confidence in us is hugely satisfying.”

Meanwhile, Welsh firm WPS has reaffirmed its commitment to the Ospreys, agreeing a new deal to have its logo on the 2016-17 kit. The WPS Financial Group logo will once again feature on the back of the left leg of the shorts for next season, a spot it has occupied over the past two years.

Andrew Millward, managing director of Ospreys Rugby, said: “The relationship between the WPS Financial Group and Ospreys Rugby is one that goes much deeper than just a sponsor with a logo on the kit. As an official supplier to the Ospreys, their expert advice and knowledge helps us thrive off the field.

“Building mutually beneficial, long-term partnerships with locally based companies like WPS, is key to our ongoing stability and success.”