Ospreys unveil 2010/11 jersey at Liberty

The Ospreys took the wraps off their new-look playing strip for the 2010/11 season at a Liberty Stadium launch event today.

After an incredible 45,000 of the 09/10 version were sold over the course of the last twelve months, the jersey is once again expected to be the one of the biggest selling shirts in UK and Irish club and regional rugby.

Produced by Kooga who have manufactured every Ospreys kit since the formation of the region in 2003, it will again feature the logo of long-term primary sponsors RWE npower renewables emblazoned across the chest.

The overall sponsorship package is in excess of £1 million, the highest value in the history of the region, with a number of sponsors signing up to long term deals, while a number of new names feature on the jersey for the first time.

Earlier this year, primary sponsor RWE npower renewables commited to an additional three-year sponsorship, up to the end of 2012/13, having sponsored the region since 2005. The new deal features several contractual additions, including an annual minimum contribution of 25 per cent of the sponsorship fee to the well-established Ospreys Community Development Programme, helping to ensure the continued sustainable development of rugby throughout Wales.

Ongoing secondary sponsors are Persimmon Homes, Worthington’s, Fujitsu, Maximuscle and Veolia Transport, with new sponsors coming on board in the form of Nathaniel Car Sales, Jewson, Harris Pye and Kaymac Marine.

Ospreys Managing Director, Roger Blyth, said:

“The unveiling of a new Ospreys shirt is always eagerly awaited and this year is no different. We have worked extremely hard to develop a strong brand, and it is particularly satisfying that the strength of the brand is such that not only are we able to confirm that several long term sponsors are happy to extend their relationship with us, but we have a number of notable businesses, both local and national, who have come on board for this season.

“We are extremely grateful to all our sponsors and partners, who have a big part to play in what we are attempting to do here at the Ospreys. Our goal is to create a sustainable rugby organisation that is leading the way, on and off the pitch, and the assistance we receive from these businesses is essential if we are to achieve our goals.

“Kooga has once again created an eye catching jersey which we hope will prove as popular as its predecessors, and we are extremely grateful for their continued design expertise which is clearly an essential ingredient of the ongoing sales success that the Ospreys jersey enjoys.”

Kim Daye, UK Sponsorship Manager at RWE npower renewables said:

"Following the announcement of a three year extension to our agreement with Ospreys earlier this year, it gives me great pleasure to be part of the new season shirt unveil today.??

"The shirt design has come along way since our partnership with Ospreys began in 2005 and the evolution in design on show today directly mirrors the vast achievements of the club, both on and off the pitch. Just as the shirt design has evolved over time, so has our relationship with Ospreys, which continues to grow and develop with each new season.

"The RWE Group is one of the largest inward investors in Wales, and the renewables business has over 100 years proud association with the country.  Through the delivery of our renewable energy projects we continue to make a significant contribution towards looking after Wales' environment, generating long lasting, clean power.

"In partnership with Ospreys, one of the most community focused rugby clubs in the country, we are proud to be able to strengthen RWE npower renewables' association with Wales by offering much needed support to help grassroots clubs, while at the same time continuing to power elite rugby on a European platform.

"We look forward to the start of the new season with huge anticipation and wish the Ospreys every success in their 2010/11 campaign."

Ospreys Managing Director, Mike Cuddy, continued:

“To be able to confirm an enhanced sponsorship package for the new season is excellent news for everybody involved at the region, and certainly sends out a powerful business statement ahead of the new season. As the region has grown over the last seven years, so has the importance of our relationship with our sponsors, who are now an integral part of our business.

“We are extremely grateful to all our sponsors, both existing and new, who continue to provide us with the financial support and stability needed to enable us to compete at the highest level. To do so, we find ourselves up against clubs from England and France in particular who have resources beyond our wildest dreams, which is why this sponsorship package is so important, bringing us the financial stability we need to plan for a long-term sustainable future at the top end of the professional game.”

The new look jersey will once again be predominantly black, but this year will feature additional ‘on-trend’ purple side panels, while the change jersey will be white and purple. The new shirt incorporates a new top-secret technical fabric that reduces the ‘grip-ability’ of the shirt, giving players an advantage when attempting to burst out of tackles.

In addition to the two main shirts, later this season will see the launch of a third charity version, which will help to raise much needed funds for a worthwhile cause to be confirmed.

Bill Newton, Managing Director of Kooga, the UK’s leading rugby shirt manufactureradded:

“We have an outstanding relationship with the Ospreys that continues to go from strength to strength, as illustrated by the continued phenomenon that is the sales of the Ospreys jersey, which continues to defy belief. The 2009/10 version saw sales as strong as ever, no mean feat at a time when many areas of the economy, including the sportswear market, continues to face a tough time. The strength of the Ospreys brand is clear.

“I’m confident that this year’s shirt will prove just as popular. It’s combination of on-trend colour system, with purple set to be one of the fashionable colours over the coming months, and advanced technology, is a winner. The players want lightweight breathable shirts that act as a second skin while looking good, and that’s what we’ve given them. The shirt is fully sublimated with all the logos part of the fabric meaning there is no extra weight, while the liquid pro technology ensures the shirt doesn’t hold water, and wicks sweat away from the body.

“The Ospreys jersey is one of the most in-demand, and combined with Kooga’s strong distribution network, we can expect strong sales again over the next year.”

There will be two versions of the home shirt available to purchase, the traditional supporters version and the enhanced ‘Premier’ jersey, which is a heavyweight, fully embroidered version, while the away shirt will be available in just the supporters version.