2008 News

OKI quits Jubilee - St.George Leader

By Marianna Papadakis

St.George Leader, 21 October 2008

The naming rights for Jubilee Stadium are up for grabs after OKI Printing Solutions cancelled its sponsorship of St George Illawarra Dragons.

The decision comes after the club announced it would return to the re-developed stadium to play half of its Sydney-based home matches in 2009.

OKI Printing Solutions General Manager Graham Harman said the company held "no ill-feeling" towards the club, after investing in sponsorship for the stadium, advertising on club jerseys and helping the Dragons retain former captain Mark Gasnier over the past three years.

Mr Harman said the company chose not to take an option to extend the contract when Gasnier announced he would leave the club this year.

"We didn't really get the benefit of those rights because they played at ANZ Stadium this year," Mr. Harman said. "That was one of the reasons we decided to discontinue the sponsorship.”

“There was a strong possibility we would have continued it if they had stayed at Jubilee."

Mr. Harman said the company "invested heavily" in the club.

St George Illawarra Peter Doust said the club had forged a deal with liquor stores Cellarbrations for jerseys, signage and other benefits.

Mr. Doust did not say how much OKI Printing Solutions sponsorship was worth, but the company was an "icon" sponsor, meaning it contributed more than $100,000 a year to the club.

"I am aware they (OKI) will not be expressing interest," Mr Doust said.

"We would like to think the Council will discuss the process with us."

The sponsorship deal with OKI will come to an end on October 31.

Kogarah Council has called for expressions of interest from sponsors keen to win naming rights for the ground.

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