Big Bash League: Colonel Sanders ousts Ronald McDonald in BBL sponsorship battle

Cricket’s fast food bun fight over is over with KFC locked in as Big Bash sponsors despite a super-sized offer from McDonald’s.

KFC has been the naming rights partner of the BBL since its inception and has got the gravy once again in an extended deal which includes sponsorship of the women’s BBL and women’s national team.

McDonald’s had staged an audacious bid to steal the naming rights deal off its traditional drive-thru rivals, and were reportedly prepared to pay more than the Colonel.

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However, Cricket Australia bosses decided that loyalty was worth more, and didn’t deviate from its intention to stick with the KFC bucket hats which have become a prominent feature amongst BBL crowds.

“It’s always our preference to reward the loyalty of our longstanding partners, and KFC is no exception, they’ve been with us for 17 years,” said CA executive, Anthony Everard.

“They have become synonymous with the summer of cricket, primarily by their links to the BBL. They’re an iconic global brand, the images of the bucket heads in the crowd have become synonymous with the BBL.

“It was apparent very early on, that they had a strong desire to continue, and we’re delighted with their commitment to move forward with us. The commercial outcome is a really good one for cricket and we look forward to working with them in the years to come.”

There were reports that McDonald’s was baffled at not feeling they were given a proper chance to present its proposed $10 million a year offer to CA bosses, but Cricket Australia is making no apologies for choosing loyalty over dollars.

“There’s a number of things that come into play and I guess, as I said, 17 years into the partnership, the commitment and investment KFC have made particularly in those early days of the BBL, where it was a bit of a leap of faith and a bit of an unknown quantity for them – they have come with us on the journey,” said Everard, who was formerly the head of the BBL.

“They understand the strategy clearly. It’s obviously provided significant financial returns to them and it’s a great partnership. We don’t take any of that for granted.”

The Bucketheads will be back next season.Source:News Corp Australia

KFC are the second CA sponsor after Vodafone to expand their interests in cricket beyond the women’s game – another illustration of the spike in women’s sport.

“That’s a credit to the players, it’s a credit to those administrators over the years who have made the commitment in terms of the strategy of the women’s game and then put their money where their mouth is to support the growth of women’s cricket,” said Everard.

“We all saw what can happen when you do that, earlier this year on the 8th of March at the MCG (women’s World Cup final) and it’s no surprise to me whatsoever that the brands around the country are now seeking to align with their products with women’s sport.

“We’ve only scratched the surface, there’s a lot more to come.”

Originally published asKFC eats up Maccas in BBL bun fight

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