Barclays Bank of Kenya, now Absa, has far-reaching plans to boost junior golf development in the country as part of their long standing support towards the prestigious Kenya Open Golf Championship. The junior development initiative is geared towards a dedicated search of the inaugural Kenyan winner of the event which has now upgraded to European Tour status.
No Kenyan golfer has won the prestigious Kenya Open but Barclays believe all is possible with a vibrant junior programme. Barclays on Tuesday announced a two-year sponsorship deal of the 2019 Magical Kenya Open to the tune of Sh230million—making them the biggest ever private company sponsors of the event since its inception in 1967. Barclays’ chief executive officer, Jeremy Awori, yesterday said they are partnering with various stakeholders including the Junior Golf Foundation in a bid to bolster the country’s fortunes at the Kenya Open.
“We have worked closely with various golfing bodies to try and see how best we support the sport at junior and amateur level to catapult Kenyans to the top of the Kenya Open just as their foreign counterparts. We are talking to the Junior Golf Foundation (JGF) to see how best we can improve golf at junior level which is a key feeder to the amateur game and the professionals,” said Awori. “The Barclays Bank of Kenya brand will be transitioning to Absa by the end of June 2020 and there are series of things we are doing between now and that date to move with our customers and stakeholders. Kenya Open is an opportunity for us and we find it quite exciting as it’s the first year we are moving from the European Challenge Tour to the elite European Tour. This is a major milestone as the tournament will be aired live to more than 450million homes across the globe. We have an opportunity to showcase Kenyan golf and the country as a destination for tourism.”