Sponsorship; Talks under way for new shirt deal

IN THE difficult economic climate, the Scottish Rugby Union has had to fight hard, like all sports organisations, to maintain commercial relationships – particularly with the sponsors who put significant sums of investment into the game north of the Border.

Sir David Murray sponsors the national team through his Murray International company, which replaced Famous Grouse as shirt sponsor in 2007. The deal is due to come to an end – but could be extended for a short spell.

"Hopefuly, we're closer (to securing a new sponsor] after Argentina than we were before," said SRU chief executive Gordon McKie. "We have discussions under way with several brands. As of now, no one has made an offer, but the Murray situation does not expire technically until post-Six Nations 2011, albeit with lead times associated with new kit. The new World Cup kit comes out in May, 2011. Murray could stay on the jerseys until after the Six Nations, but if a new sponsor wants to get involved sooner and it makes sense from a branding perspective then that opportunity also exists. Murray is confirmed to the end of November, but Murray is prepared to go to the end of the Six Nations if that makes sense for everybody, i.e. it doesn't make sense to change a jersey mid-season."