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Bradford Bulls coach Francis Cummins: New Provident deal shows we mean business again
Francis Cummins believes the Bulls’ lucrative new sponsorship deal “sends out a message” about the club’s desire to re-establish themselves as a serious force in Super League.
The Bulls coach yesterday joined owner Omar Khan and honorary chairman Gerry Sutcliffe in the Coral Stand, where a four-year £1.2 million sponsorship package with Provident Financial Group was announced.
The agreement with the Centenary Square money-lending firm will see its name emblazoned on the team’s kit and Odsal renamed The Provident Stadium.
Cummins said the agreement – being hailed as one of the biggest ever in Super League – underlined the strength of the Bulls brand and declared: “It’s a massive deal for the club and it sends out a message.
“I’m dealing with various other things at the moment, even down to supplement companies who provide simple protein for the players.
“They’ve had the opportunity to get involved with rugby union clubs and cricket.
“But they’ve come to Bradford Bulls because they recognise the brand.
“You’ve probably got five or six real brands in rugby league – Bradford, Leeds, St Helens, Wigan and Warring-ton. This deal with Provident gives the club stability and shows how much people value the club, the brand and the city.
“Hopefully there will be other companies who follow suit now and similarly back the club.”
The Bulls boss said the knock-on effects of the deal would not necessarily be felt immediately in the football department but instead lay the foundations for a bright future.
He added: “We’ve already identified what we need to invest in.
“We’ve got the training facility at Tong and that’s a constant anyway, helping us with developing young kids and going the extra yard with them.
“It’s the little things that we need to put in place as a football department.
“It’s all about the long-term but this deal helps us to move forward with confidence.
“It’s credit to Omar and Gerry that they’ve got Provident on board.”
The Aspire Group were also announced as another of the Bulls’ shirt sponsors, joining fast-food chain Rajas and Sovereign Healthcare.
Cummins, meanwhile, is hoping to sign at least one more player, with a frontline prop his priority.
He is also set to appoint a coach to take charge of the newly-formed Under-19s side.
“It’s got to be the right person for that job but it will happen,” he added.