The ECB today announced that Kia’s sponsorship of women’s cricket has been extended for a further 2 years, running until the end of 2019.
Kia originally signed a 3 year deal to sponsor the England women’s team, which was later expanded to include the “title” sponsorship of the Super League.
The deal was/ is not a huge one in financial terms – the original agreement was worth only a fraction of what Waitrose were paying at the time to sponsor the men’s team – but it was/ is still hugely significant because it is a “stand-alone” deal for the women’s game – not a “tack-on” sponsorship to the men’s game.
And that Kia chose to expand their commitment via the Super League was also big news, because it put a value on women’s domestic cricket for the first time in this country.
Meanwhile Kia are clearly happy that it is a proposition which has worked for them, as they continue to target the “soccer cricket mom” market with their mid-range SUVs, as driven by all the England players.
So why have they only signed on for two years this time?
[Idle speculation alert!!]
In 2020 the ECB are planning to launch their “City T20” competition.
Right now, the City T20 is only being talked about as a men’s tournament; but following the logic of BBL/ WBBL, might not an aligned Women’s City T20 also make sense?
Put it this way: it would be a remarkable surprise if the idea hadn’t crossed anyone’s mind over at ECB Towers; and that would mean no more Kia Super League after 2019… which is exactly when the extended Kia deal is now scheduled to end.
As the kids say… you do the math!