O2 renew Cork GAA sponsorship deal

MOBILE phone giants O2 yesterday announced they are to renew their sponsorship of Cork GAA for three years.

The financial terms of the agreement were not revealed at yesterday’s announcement, but it is understood that the deal is worth an annual a six-figure sum. Cork County Board Chairman Jerry O’Sullivan described the deal as “very lucrative”.

The deal will see O2 continue to sponsor Cork GAA teams at both adult and underage level, and maintain a partnership that first began in 1998.

“We’re thrilled,” remarked O’Sullivan. “I think it has been a beneficial sponsorship both for ourselves and for O2.

“We’re both high-profile and we seem to complement each other and we’re delighted with the new deal. Especially in view of the difficult economic circumstances, to agree a deal of this nature, it’s great for the GAA and it’s great for O2.

“It wouldn’t be fair to reveal the terms as we normally don’t divulge that kind of information. I will say it’s very lucrative, a very generous deal.”

O2 director of marketing Damian Devaney claimed it was company policy not to reveal the financial terms of sponsorship deals but did say that there had been no hitches in negotiating the new deal.

“Be it with Cork GAA or with the O2 music venue, we don’t divulge figures, purely because we’re in a competitive environment. There were no negotiation problems because you know each other’s wants and needs.

“The better the relationship, the more concise the negotiations. I suppose if you’re starting from scratch, not knowing each other, it might take a long time. But it’s different when you have a relationship spanning this amount of time.”

Devaney also insisted there was never a possibility of O2 pulling out of the agreement due to the current economic climate, as has happened recently in both Dublin and Laois.

“The professional thing, I think, is to look at the facts on the ground, and the facts on the ground are that we have a higher market share (in Cork). Our customers in Cork have a better perception of us, we wouldn’t be too long losing that if we took away this key pillar of our business in Cork, so that wasn’t a runner.

“The thing about sponsorships is they have to be something your customers want, they have to be a good fit and then, nearly more importantly, the relationship on the ground has to be win-win.

“This is a fantastic thing for us and hopefully for Cork GAA.”



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