Soccer

Norwich City terminate sponsorship deal with BK8 Sports over provocative social media content

Norwich City have terminated their commercial deal with betting firm BK8 Sports amid outrage over sexually provocative marketing content.

The Championship winners announced on Monday they had struck a partnership deal with the Asian company, whose name would have been on the front of the club’s shirts next season.

However, following backlash over imagery used in social media posts, the Canaries and their new principal partner have agreed to end their association by mutual consent and the club have apologised for “an error of judgement”.

A statement on the club’s official website said: “Norwich City can announce the mutual termination of the club’s commercial partnership with BK8.

“The club and BK8 have taken on board feedback from its supporters and partners, and after continued discussions we have agreed to immediately end the partnership.”

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Chief operating officer Ben Kensell added: “We have worked hard to build trust and engagement through our countless initiatives with our supporters and partners. We place huge value on our open and honest relationships with our community and supporters.

    “As a self-financed club, there is always a fine balance between generating the revenue levels required to help maintain that model, while working within our visions and values.

    “On this occasion, we made an error of judgement. Our standards were not at the levels we demand of our football club.

    “We can now only apologise to our supporters and former players, Grant Holt and Darren Eadie, who were across the BK8 promotional launch campaign, for any offence caused.

    “We remain highly committed to diversity and equality across our football club and its community. We want to continue to embed a highly inclusive culture across the club, together with an accessible and welcoming environment free of demeaning and discriminatory behaviours.”

    Prior to the termination of the contract, BK8 released a statement apologising for any offence caused by the social media posts.

    On Monday, the company said: “Following concerns and issues raised by Norwich City Football Club and its supporters following an announcement this morning, BK8 would like to wholeheartedly apologise for any offence caused by our historical marketing.

    “We accept that this form of marketing isn’t befitting of a Premier League partnership.

    “We have immediately removed all marketing material of this nature and will conduct a review of our marketing strategy moving forward.”

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