Long-Time Parramatta Eels Sponsor Pirtek Fails To Reach New Deal With NRL Club
National Rugby League club Parramatta Eels will part ways with major sponsor Pirtek at the end of the season after "failing to reach an agreement over the value of the deal," according to Michael Chammas of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD. Reports suggest the Eels have raised their asking price from A$1M ($1.04M) to A$1.5M a season, an increase Pirtek did not "deem as a worthwhile investment." This will end Pirtek's nine-year association as the club's major sponsor. The company was looking to extend its contract with the Western Sydney club for an amount similar to the A$1M-a-season it paid in '10 as part of a three-year deal that extended through to the end of '13. There is a suggestion the Eels demanded such a large sponsorship price as a means to terminate its association with Pirtek "because of the tension between the Eels board" and Pirtek CEO Glenn Duncan. Duncan resigned from the board in Oct. '11 after "expressing his dismay over the way it handled the financial saga that surrounded former Eels boss Paul Osborne" (SMH, 2/19).