Football is the most popular sports in the East African region. And fans throng stadia to watch their favorite teams take on their opponents. Players, atleast according to local standards, are fairly well enumerated. Apart from the occasional boycott of matches or threats to abscond training in protest for non-payment of allowances, the beautiful game is on an upward trajectory. So which are the richest clubs in the region? Successful clubs are generally the richest as they easily attract sponsors. Here are the wealthiest clubs in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.
Wealthiest Football Clubs In Kenya
Gor Mahia FC: Leads the roost of the richest clubs in Kenya-but its not like they pay their players millions of shillings as you world expect of wealthy clubs. The highest paid player in Gor is former Harambee Stars striker Dennis Oliech who pockets kes350,000. Gor, or K’ogalo to its legion of fans, entered a three-year sponsorship deal with SportPesa worth kes198,607,000. The most decorated football club in Kenya is said to renew a deal halted by Tuzo in 2013. The deal will see the 18th premier league winners’ pocket Kes23 million per year for the next three seasons. K’ogalo gate collections is kes2 million which translates to kes60 million per season, atleast according to figures provided by Standard.co.ke. Gor is one of the few clubs in the country that has a team bus.
AFC leopards glory days are behind them. The club performance has been abysmal at best and attempts to curtail this free fall have been in vain. AFC received a three-year sponsorship worth Kes 156,406,403 from SportPesa. Ingwe, as the club is also affectionately known, comes second in gate collections after Gor. The club gate collections at one team amounted to kes10 million, but a string of bad performances have seen the fortunes of Ingwe dwindle.
Tusker FC: The club may lack the animated fanatical supporters of both Gor and AFC Leopards but it is financial stable than most of the clubs in Kenya’s top flight league. Tusker FC is funded by East African Breweries Limited to the tune of kes30 million per season. Apart from the funds from EABL, the club makes another kes1million in replica jersey every year and a similar amount in gate collections.
Wazito FC: It was a little known second tier team until moneyed Dubai based businessman Ricardo Badoer bought the club. His financial muscle is already being felt after he acquired a state of the art Mercedes Benz bus for the team. Plans are said to be at an advanced stage to build a stadium for Wazito FC.
Tanzania Richest Teams
Simba FC: This is one of the richest clubs in Tanzania and East Africa by extension. It is has severally been ranked as the best team in the region. The club is sponsored by the only billionaire in Tanzania Mr Mohammed Dewji, whose wealth is wealth is put at $1.5bn (£980m) by Forbes magazine. Other sponsors for the club are; SportsPesa and MO Energy drinks. Gate collections for Simba FC in major games cross the Kes5 million mark.
Yanga FC: The rivalry between Yanga and Simba FC is almost legendary. The two teams are what Gor and AFC Leopards used to be in years gone by. Yanga is sponsored by SportsPesa. Upto kes21 million in gate collections have been recorded in past matches pitting Simba FC and Yanga FC.
AZAM FC: Another powerhouse in the Tanzanian Premier League. NRM Bank is Azam’s sponsor.
Uganda Richest clubs
KCCA–According to businessfocus.co.ug, the worth of KCCA is (Shs1.93bn) Kes51,932,790. Kasasiro boys, as the team is known, has Prime Media, StarTimes, MTN and Britam Insurance as their sponsors.
Vipers – The club net worth has been put at Shs1.432bn (Kes37671454)
SC Villa – worth is Shs1.3b (Kes 34980635)