They share the same colours—blue and white—and it could have been a perfect match, but Be Forward Wanderers could not sway FDH Bank to take them on board as their new sponsor.
In the past two months, rumour has been rife that the Nomads were on the verge of clinching a sponsorship deal with the giant local financial institution and the Lali Lubani Road outfit’s followers believed, in cold comfort, that the bank would bail them out as sponsorship termination with their Japanese sponsor, Be Forward Limited, looms.
Wanderers chairperson Symon Sikwese and FDH Bank marketing manager Ronald Chimchere confirmed that they had been talking behind the scenes, but could not strike a deal.
Said Sikwese in an interview on Thursday: “We approached FDH Bank and we had hope that things would work out because they were impressed with our sponsorship proposal.
“Unfortunately, they told us that it could be a conflict of interest since they will be sponsoring a national cup through FAM [Football Association of Malawi], but should an opportunity arise in the future, they may consider us.
“Nevertheless, we are still courting other prospective partners/sponsors and we appeal to the Wanderers family, especially the players to exercise patience.”
He also said they have requested for a transitional package from Be Forward Limited ahead of the sponsorship termination at the end of the month.
On his part, Chimchere said: “They [Wanderers] indeed came knocking on our door, knowing that we are a Malawian bank, but we indeed told them that with the FDH Cup sponsorship, it would be a challenge to sponsor them as well.
“We did not commit anything, but we assured them that should an opportunity arise in the future, we may consider them. At the moment, our focus is on the cup competition.”
The development comes barely days after the Nomads boss revealed that their ambitious fundraising initiative, dubbed Noma Yanga Noma Yathu, which is aimed at raising K100 million a month, is turning out to be a flop.
Be Forward Limited sponsors Wanderers to the tune of $200 000 (about K154 million) per year, but their budget is pegged at K250 million. n