KUCHING (March 18): The M3 League has been renamed the MBSB Bank Championship, following the signing of a sponsorship agreement between Amateur Football League (AFL) and MBSB Bank Bhd today.
The ceremony, which took place at the lounge of Stadium Sarawak in Petra Jaya here, was attended by AFL chairman Datuk Wira Mohd Yusoff Mahadi and MBSB Bank group chief executive officer Datuk Nor Azam M Taib.
In his remarks, Nor Azam hailed football as a sport that could unite a society of various culture and races. On the agreement, he regarded it as a historic moment for the banking group in that it would become a title sponsor for this Malaysian second-tier (semi-professional) football league.
“The Islamic banking group also works very closely with the Sarawak government to spur the local economy and our cooperation ranges from the fields of sports to businesses,” he said.
Meanwhile, AFL chief operating officer Mohd Raimi Fakri Mohd Fuad said having MBSB Bank as a title sponsor was indicative of domestic football leagues having their own commercial value.
“Hopefully, this cooperation with the banking group would attract more international and local corporations to invest in the local football scene, at the amateur level, which has great potential from the commercial perspective,” he said.
MBSB Bank is also an official bank partner to the AFL, as well as sponsor for the M4 and M5 leagues managed by AFL.
Others present at the event were MBSB Bank board of directors’ member Datuk Azrulnizam Abdul Aziz, its chief strategic officer Dato Azlan Shahrim, and Sarawak Football Association president Abang Zulkarnain Abang Abdurahman.