Netball NZ's new elite domestic league has received another big commercial boost, landing a three-year naming rights deal with ANZ.
The announcement continues ANZ's involvement with netball, with the bank being the principal sponsor of the transtasman league for the past nine years.
Netball NZ declined to reveal how much the sponsorship deal was worth, but described ANZ's level of investment as "significant". Today's news follows the announcement earlier this year that Netball NZ had signed a five-year broadcast deal with Sky.
The new domestic competition, which is yet to be formally named, will replace the ANZ Championship in New Zealand from next season, with a triple round robin featuring the current five New Zealand teams plus a new team based in the greater Auckland area.
ANZ also supports local netball communities through the ANZ Grant Scheme, through which it has awarded over $500,000 in grants over the past five years. More than 500 clubs and school teams across New Zealand have benefited.
"ANZ, and before it the National Bank, has been a proud supporter of netball from the grassroots to the elite level for 15 years. It's part of our commitment to supporting communities and the things Kiwis are passionate about. Netball is New Zealand's number one female sport, and is followed by 1.3 million Kiwis," said ANZ New Zealand chief executive David Hisco.
"We now look forward to being part of the game's exciting future. This new sponsorship will promote netball's profile and continuing advancement in this country and support a pathway for the development of future Silver Ferns."
Netball New Zealand chief executive Jennie Wyllie said Netball NZ said the organisation has been working closely with ANZ to create the "world's most intensely fought, captivating and innovative female sports league, featuring the world's best players".
"We are genuinely excited about the new-look competition and believe it is the best step forward for Netball in New Zealand. This is an important focus for New Zealand to strengthen performance pathways and increase quality of players, coaches and officials.
The new competition will see teams playing 15 round robin games, including Super Sundays featuring all six teams in action at the same venue, before culminating in a two-game Finals Series with the top three. This means more matches in New Zealand, and more clashes between New Zealand teams that will build the local rivalry.