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NBA Aim To Grow League’s Business In Africa

T
he National Basketball Association (NBA) have formed a new entity to conduct the league’s business in Africa, contributing to the growth of the Basketball Africa League (BAL), a new 12-team competition in the midst of its inaugural season.

The value of the investment has not been made public, but NBA commissioner, Adam Silver, told media outlets the enterprise value of the venture is already “nearly USD$1 billion (AUD$1.3 billion)”, with funding used to expand presence in African markets, develop the continent’s basketball ecosystem and support the launch of additional NBA academies and social responsibility initiatives.

Among the investors in NBA Africa are investment holding company, Helios Fairfax Partners and Babatunde Folawiyo, the chairman and chief executive of Nigerian industrial group, Yinka Folawiyo Group, as well as an array of former NBA players.

In a statement, Silver said the NBA are looking to the future with this announcement.

“Today’s announcement is the result of many years of investment and on-the-ground work to grow the game of basketball in Africa and a recognition of the enormous opportunities ahead for the NBA on the continent,” Silver said.

“We believe that basketball can become a top sport across Africa over the next decade, and I look forward to working closely with our investors to make that goal a reality,” he said.

This entity will continue the NBA’s efforts to secure corporate partnerships in Africa, whilst also gaining media distribution rights and increasing access to basketball through grassroots and elite development.