Insignia, a company offering a wide portfolio of services including luxury lifestyle management and financial services, will be Valletta FC’s main sponsors for the coming two years. This was revealed during a press conference at Le Meridien St. Julian’s on Tuesday.
Valletta FC Vice-President for commercial affairs Alex Fenech said the club was always looking to achieve more and this involves forming partnerships with big companies. In fact after having online gaming company Betsson as the club’s main sponsor over the past two years, now thanks to the effort of Francis J. Vassallo, Valletta have reached an agreement with Insignia. He said that this partnership starts with a regular sponsorship but there are already plans which include investment in the club.
Insignia Cards Global Chief Executive Officer Rafael Carrascosa said the company was proud to enter a partnership with Valletta FC and said the shirt-sponsorship was the first visible step. He said Insignia had big plans with regards to this partnership and was eyeing a long-term commitment which could eventually include shareholding. This relationship would hopefully progress even more with Valletta advancing to further stages in UEFA competitions.
Carrascosa said Insignia was a global company who was establishing itself in Malta and this sponsorship was a great way to do this. He said this deal gives the club huge potential.
Insignia Cards Ltd CEO Fredrick Ellul said this was only the beginning of a long and successful relationship between Valletta and Insignia and revealed the company, who already has strong ties with football abroad, will launch products for Valletta supporters such as cards and schemes. Rafael Carrascosa said Valletta could be one of few football clubs worldwide to have their own branded credit card.
Valletta FC Vice-President for financial affairs Francis J. Vassallo said the hopes of advancing to the group stage of the UEFA Champions League involves making a giant leap. This not only involved having very good financial sponsorship but also very good planning. He said the club was on its way to be set up as a Public Liability Company and Valletta have been working on this issue together with the Malta Football Association.
Valletta FC President Victor Sciriha thanked Francis J. Vassallo and Alex Fenech as it was thanks to them that the club managed to secure this sponsorship. He said he was confident that the two parties could work together for a very long time.
Sciriha said that unlike previous years, the club planned better, especially with regards to foreigners and they are being offered longer contracts than the usual one-year contract. Valletta now have eight foreign players who are of quite a high level for Malta. Apart from Belgian defender Jason Vandelannoite and Brazilian midfielders/striker Denni Rocha dos Santos who were retained, this summer, Valletta signed Italian goalkeeper Pietro Marino, Gambian midfielder Hamza Barry and strikers Romulo Marques Antoneli from Brazil, Austin Obaje from Nigeria, Aziz Corr Nyang from Gambia and Tunisian Abdelkarim Nafti.
Sciriha revealed that he had been chasing Nafti, who signed his contract during the press conference, for the past two years.
The Valletta president said the transfer market is practically closed for Valletta as they were not really interested in any other players. He said the club is committed to supporting the nursery, aiming to have more nursery products in the senior squad. He said this was the way forward.
Valletta coach Mark Miller said that everything was now in place for the beginning of the BOV Premier League campaign and said that he was happy with the squad at his disposal. He said competition between the players was hot and said he believed that the bench shows how strong a team is.
Miller said such sponsorships help the club a lot since as a coach, he always wanted the best facilities and resources. Something which the club needs to improve.
This season, Valletta will be once again wearing Nike kits provided by Urban Jungle. The home kit is a white shirt with a red vertical stripe on the side and a red horizontal strip on the right sleeve. The away kit is a red shirt fading into white at the bottom.