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SportPesa continues English football drive with Southampton deal

African online sports betting company SportPesa has entered into a partnership with English Premier League football club Southampton.

The three-year deal will cover the 2016-17 to 2018-19 seasons and names the Kenya-based firm as the official betting partner of Southampton. Specific financial terms of the “multi-million pound” deal were not disclosed.

Under the agreement, Southampton will send staff to Kenya to further the development of young footballers in the country, while Kenyan players will visit the club’s Staplewood training ground.

Southampton, together with SportPesa, will also support stadium, marketing, media and business operations in Kenya as part of the deal.

Southampton’s chief executive Gareth Rogers said the deal was “by far” the club’s biggest-ever in the betting sector and one of its “largest partnerships to date”.

He added: “This partnership will allow the club to continue to build its partner portfolio for commercial success on an international scale. Our reputation for player development continues to resonate around the world and we look forward to sharing our unique philosophy in Kenya and across Africa.”

Ronald Karauri, SportPesa chief executive, added: “We are grounded to our core values that centre around grassroots sport and community development. Our vision is for Kenya to participate in the 2022 Fifa World Cup and this partnership is a step in that direction.”

SportPesa on Monday agreed a three-year shirt sponsorship deal worth a reported £10m (€11.9m/$13.2m) with Southampton’s fellow Premier League club Hull City. SportPesa is also a partner of Arsenal.