London — Leading betting firm, SportPesa has made the star-studded shortlist for the prestigious Football Business Awards (FBA) 2017 that rewards the hard work that takes place in supporting the success of the game in the United Kingdom.
SportPesa was shortlisted as a finalist for two global awards under the category of Best Brand Activation involving Football for their campaigns with English Premier League giants, Everton FC and English Football League Championship outfit- Hull City Tigers FC.
"It is truly an honour to receive such a high profile recognition for our efforts to promote football development across various regions and using football to unite cultures as well as build careers. To receive, not one but two nominations speaks volumes about the work we put in to grow the game," SportPesa CEO Ronald Karauri said.
SportPesa is one of the three companies with two nominations in the awards which have 97 finalists comprising English Premier League clubs, various charities, media companies, hospitality companies and gaming firms among others that have been nominated under various categories.
The black-tie FBA gala night, for the national event at which all the achievements off the pitch are celebrated at the end of each year, will be held in London on November 2.
Everton signed a record title partnership deal with the bookmaker on May 15 and got the nod for the Brand Activation award for their very first engagement with SportPesa which saw the Blues make a historic tour of Tanzania that celebrated their addition to the company's expanding portfolio.
The Toffees; who became the first EPL team to play in East Africa when they beat 2017 SportPesa Super Cup champions, Kenyan titans Gor Mahia FC 2-1 in Dar-es-Salaam on July 13, conducted a series of engaging community activities on the side-lines of their landmark tour.
The advance party led by retired club legend, Leon Osman, travelled ahead of the squad to learn more about local culture, meet coffee growers and take a tour of Dar in a bicycle before the team visited Uhuru Primary School where UK aid is ensuring deaf and blind students receive the same level of education as their classmates.
The Toffees featuring star-signing and retired England captain; Wayne Rooney, then joined Albino United FC for a training session to highlight the challenges those with the condition face in the region and presented each player with the 2017/18 away shirt besides conducting football clinics.
The Hull City versus SportPesa All Stars game held in February, the first time for a Kenyan side to play an EPL side, gave rise to the careers of many budding footballers among them 16-year old Joshua Otieno, a player drawn from Kenya's Sony Sugar who got a chance to briefly train with Hull City youngsters after the game.
The sixth edition of the Football Business Award will be held in London on November 2. The latest nomination comes three months after SportPesa clinched two awards at the Discovery Sports Industry Awards held in Johannesburg, South Africa.
SportPesa scooped the award for Best African Sponsorship for its support of the grassroots league Super 8 in partnership with local organization Extreme Sports Limited. The company's marketing campaign 'Made of Winners' emerged best in the Pan African Campaign of the Year category. The award came shortly after SportPesa was recognized as a Super brand in January 2017.