Comms Direct, Cardiff City's shirt sponsor was offered an incredible half-a-million pound deal to give up their advertising rights for the FA Cup final.
But executives at CommsDirect declined the offer from an Asian-based online gambling venture in favour of taking advantage of a "once in a century" opportunity to have global television exposure when Cardiff play Portsmouth at Wembley. CommsDirect, which has its headquarters in Cardiff, is one of Europe’s leading third-generation mobile phone contract reselling businesses.
It employs 400 people at its Cardiff and Swansea call centres and sells a new phone every 40 seconds.
Days after Cardiff’s FA semi-final victory over Barnsley on April 6, the company was approached by an intermediary representing an online gambling venture based in the Far East. The broker offered £500,000 to have its clients’ name emblazoned on Cardiff City’s black strip for the FA Cup instead of CommsDirect.
Football fans in more than 200 countries, generating a global audience of more than 500 million, will view tomorrow’s match.
Matt Burge, managing director of CommsDirect, said: "On the Wednesday after Cardiff’s FA semi-final win at Wembley we were contacted by a sports marketing agency representing an undisclosed online gambling business based in Asia.
"The offer of £500,000 was tempting, but after discussing it with our board and then with Cardiff City we decided to reject it.