Glasgow Warriors are looking to further their reach in the north after scoring another significant sponsorship deal, this time with Denholm Oilfield Services.
As part of the year-long five-figure agreement, the two sides are setting up a programme which will bring young people and families from Aberdeen to matches at Scotstoun. The aim is to provide the chance to watch live professional rugby to those who might not otherwise get the opportunity.
Details are still being thrashed out, but will likely involve Denholm taking a block of seating dedicated to the northern contingent. Denholm, which employs about 120 people at bases in Aberdeen and Inverurie, is looking at ways of distributing these tickets through local charities or similar organisations.
Michael Beveridge, chief executive of Denholm Oilfield Services, said the aim is to have the programme up and running early in 2016, well before the culmination of the current Guinness Pro12 season. Following an initial year of sponsorship at Warriors, Denholm is getting more actively involved at the club.
“Last year was our first, and that was pretty good timing,” Beveridge said, referring to Warriors’ first-ever championship title in the Pro12 league. “We are more than happy to continue, and look at new ideas.”
Chairman John Denholm added: “Last year we put our foot in the water. Now we are ready to take more of a plunge.”
Beveridge is working directly on the project with Al Kellock, captain of last season’s championship side, who has moved into commercial operations for the Warriors and Scottish Rugby Union since retiring from the playing field. Kellock also manages the Warriors’ partnership with ScottishPower, a three-year six-figure deal announced at the end of October.
Kellock said youth programmes and other behind-the-scenes work like that with Denholm are an important but less prominent aspect of the Scotstoun operation.
“It is a huge part of what we do,” Kellock said. “It is not just about what happens in that 80 minutes on the rugby pitch, though that is what people naturally get excited about.”