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Racing Point agrees sponsorship deal with Kenyan bookmaker

NEWS STORY
24/01/2019

While there has been no announcement from the team itself, SportBusiness claims that Racing Point has agreed a two-year sponsorship deal with Kenyan betting company SportPesa for an annual fee of "under $15m" (£11.4m).

SportBusiness claims that sources close to the Silverstone-based outfit, which was purchased by a consortium led by Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll last year, have revealed that negotiations took place last week, with the team seeking between $10m-$12m (£7.5m-£9.2m) in the first year of the deal and between $13m - $15m (£9.9m - £11.4m) in the second.

The $15m figure is regarded as key because it is understood that this is the amount the Best Water Technology Group (BWT) paid for its partnership with the team.

For its money, BWT saw the Force Indias adopt a livery in 2017 and 2018 which reflected its corporate colours, and while BWT will remain with the team this season, it is claimed that the livery will be modified to include more blue, the corporate colour of SportPesa, along with the pink witnessed over the last couple of seasons.

Founded in 2014, SportPesa is a sports betting platform with operations in Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, the Isle of Man and the UK. With its global HQ in Nairobi, SportPesa, in Kenya, is owned and operated by Pevans East Africa, a company with shareholders from mostly Kenya, Bulgaria, and the United States, while in Italy it is jointly owned with RCS Media, the largest media company in Italy.

The deal follows that involving Red Bull and Asian online gaming provider, W66.com, that was announced in December, which itself followed F1's own controversial $100m partnership with Interregional Sports Group (ISG) and Sportradar to enable live betting during races.

Racing Point is due to reveal its 2019 livery and identity at a special event in Toronto on February 13.

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