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Sunderland lands South African Airways partnership

English Premier League football club Sunderland has furthered its commercial ties to the African continent by announcing a new partnership with South African Airways.

The length of the deal was not disclosed but the carrier becomes the club’s official Southern African airline partner.

South African Airways will support Sunderland on all aspects of its travel in Africa and the club will be showcased throughout the airline’s flight network.

Sunderland’s first team squad will kick off the partnership on Saturday, when they will wear South African Airways branded t-shirts for their pre-match warm up ahead of the game against Manchester United.

Sunderland last month announced a partnership that made Tanzania its official destination partner. The north east club linked up with Invest in Africa in January 2012, affording a springboard to the not-for-profit initiative to promote Africa as a leading investment destination and actively challenge misconceptions about investing in the continent.

Further developing its links with the continent, the club recently announced the BFS Group as its new principal partner from the start of the 2013-14 season. BFS Group is the main UK operation of Bidvest Group, which is headquartered in South Africa. Sunderland also became the first club in the world to form a partnership with the Nelson Mandela Foundation last season.