ZIFA are negotiating with a yet to be identified international kit supplier to sponsor Premiership football teams in the coming season.
If successful, the arrangement will see the sponsors providing replica jerseys for the clubs.
Acting ZIFA president, Philemon Machana, confirmed the development on the sidelines of the ZIFA/PSL stakeholders meeting held in Harare on Saturday.
“We have made remarkable progress in talking to a reputable international kit supplier who would like to provide kitsto willing Premiership clubs,” said Machana
“The way we want to craft the deal will be such that we create money for our clubs as well.
“If a club wants the kit, they will also be provided with a certain number of replicas which they would be able to sell at a certain price.”
Machana said clubs will pay nothing upfront for the replicas and they will only pay the capital amount after they sell the material while they retain profits.
“Then when they sell at their own margin, they retain the profit, they bring back the capital amounts and we reinvest and bring more kit.
“The whole idea is that we create a conduit in which our clubs can start making money. We have noted that our clubs are having challenges creating revenue streams as they don’t have the resources to access the replicas.”
Machana, who is also the association’s board member for finance, expressed concern over the manner the teams are losing out on potential revenue which goes to unlicensed third parties who sell team merchandise at stadiums.
“This is why unlicensed third parties sell club colours at the stadia and make money for themselves.
“We feel that with this initiative, we can help our clubs make money out of their colours which is the trend the world over.
“Fans will know that they can get actual replicas for their clubs going forward if the deal sails through as is more likely.
“The good thing about this is that the clubs won’t have to pay to get the replicas but they only return the capital after selling the replicas.”
Machana said once ZIFA seals the deal with the kit supplier, no team will be forced to enter into the arrangement as other clubs already have shirt sponsors.
“So by and large, this is an opportunity for the clubs to make money out of replicas.
“No club is forced to enter into this deal but as ZIFA, we just have to create money- making opportunities to our clubs.
“We have told the clubs about the arrangement and they all said they will consider it. We delayed telling them as we wanted to first make sure the deal will be beneficial to their operations. We believe football is big business and this is only the beginning, we will not rest until our clubs start realising their full value.”