QA Venue Solutions announce Kigali Arena naming rights deal with BK Group

RWANDA – QA Venue Solutions Rwanda, a Pan-African venue solutions provider, has signed an arena naming rights deal with BK Group, a holding company.

The agreement, worth US$8 million, provides the holding company, with naming rights to the venue formerly known as ‘Kigali Arena’.

The agreement, signed between QA Venue Solutions, BK Group, and the Government of Rwanda, is the biggest arena naming rights deal on the African continent. It will set the benchmark for the future of venue management and sponsorship in the industry.

The 10,000-seat venue will be known as ‘BK Arena’ with immediate effect and for the next 6 years. This was announced during a press conference held today at BK Arena.

“We are proud to see our name on the iconic BK Arena through this partnership with QA Venue Solutions and the Government of Rwanda,” said Dr. Diane Karusisi CEO, BK Group.

“At BK Group, we are constantly devising strategies to get closer to our customers and today we are starting an exciting partnership that will strengthen BK Group’s positioning in Rwanda and on the continent and allow sports and entertainment fans to enjoy the best experiences while also promoting cashless payments.”

BK Arena will become a platform for both local and global athletes, promoters, entertainers, and other industry players to perform at the highest level.

Inaugurated in August 2019 and managed by QA Venue Solutions since 2020, the multi-purpose BK Arena has successfully hosted sold-out concerts headlined by international artists, provided the venue for international conferences, and has welcomed the 2021 and 2022 Basketball Africa League (BAL) Finals among other events.

“We are investing 100% of this deal back in the industry, developing talent and investing in the overall infrastructure by implementing international systems and standards to not only benefit the fans but also partners and other industry players across various levels,” QA Venue Solutions Director, Kyle Schofield, said.

“This game-changing naming rights deal, which we aim to implement across the multiple African venues that we manage, is proof that QAVS’s revolutionary venue management model works.”

BK Arena could not have become a reality without the support of the Government of Rwanda. With sports and entertainment tourism becoming more and more central to the government’s MICE strategy, QAVS and BK Group easily received government buy-in for the partnership.

“The Government of Rwanda is happy to be a partner in this deal. Since its inauguration in August 2019, the arena has hosted a number of successful events that have provided lots of opportunities for Rwandans,” Zephanie Niyonkuru, the Deputy Chief Executive Officer at the Rwanda Development Board said.

“With this new sponsorship from BK Group, we hope that the BK Arena will continue to position Rwanda as an African hub for sports and entertainment. It is our expectation to bring the best of events from around the world to Rwanda, which will ultimately boost the tourism sector.”

BK Group has four subsidiaries: Bank of Kigali Plc, BK General Insurance, BK TecHouse, and BK Capital Ltd. This naming rights partnership was part of the Bank’s strategy to get closer to its customers.

As part of the deal, Bank of Kigali – a BK Group subsidiary, will be firmly established as a future-facing bank that provides cutting-edge digital products and services to its clients.

With a special focus on the youth market, the bank will act as a conduit to the rest of the world through financial inclusion.

The flagship product of this new era is the BK Arena Prepaid card that will allow the unbanked youth to easily load money onto a prepaid wallet that can be used like any other bank card.

To make the BK Arena card easier to acquire, BK accounts will not be a prerequisite to owning a card.

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