NZR announce new deal with petrochemical giant

Author
NZ Herald ,
Publish Date
Wed, 28 Jul 2021, 10:25AM
David Havili celebrates a try during the All Blacks win over Fiji. (Photo / Photosport)
David Havili celebrates a try during the All Blacks win over Fiji. (Photo / Photosport)

NZR announce new deal with petrochemical giant

Author
NZ Herald ,
Publish Date
Wed, 28 Jul 2021, 10:25AM

New Zealand Rugby has announced an official partnership with petrochemical firm INEOS after lobbying attempts from Greenpeace to axe the deal.

NZR have revealed a six-year partnership kicking off in 2022 with INEOS becoming their "Official Performance Partner".

INEOS will appear on the back of the playing shorts and on the front of the training jersey of each of NZR's Teams in Black (the All Blacks, Black Ferns, All Blacks Sevens, Black Ferns Sevens, Māori All Blacks, All Blacks XV and All Blacks Under-20) from 2022.

More details on the Performance Partnership will be unveiled later this year.

Greenpeace have been lobbying for New Zealand Rugby to axe the deal.

UK-based Ineos, which is majority owned by billionaire CEO James Ratcliffe, is an oil, gas and petrochemicals conglomerate, headquartered in London.

According to Greenpeace, Ineos is one of only 20 companies responsible for half of single-use plastic items thrown away globally - and a significant player in the oil and gas sector.

"It's appalling that in the thick of the climate crisis, our treasured national rugby teams could be branded with the logo of a company responsible for choking our oceans with plastic pollution and driving climate disasters," Greenpeace senior campaigner Steve Abel said in a statement after a petition was launched opposing the deal last month.

NZR CEO Mark Robinson said it was an exciting new venture to partner with INEOS - who also sponsor Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team; INEOS Grenadiers cycling team; INEOS TEAM UK sailing team; and football clubs OGC Nice and FC Lausanne-Sport.

"To partner with INEOS and be part of such a unique and diverse global sports performance group is an exciting new venture," Robinson said.

"We are committed to nurturing the development of rugby over the next six years with INEOS Sport and are looking forward to working alongside some of the best sports teams in the world.

"INEOS will bring an innovative approach and dedication to the partnership with our Teams in Black, qualities we see across all aspects of their business, particularly around sustainability with their commitment to deliver a zero-carbon emission future in line with the Paris Agreement," Robinson said.