Major partner announcement

Sunshine Coast Lightning today announced a major partnership with Downer Group. The Downer brand will appear on the Lightning uniform and on the court at home games, with the relationship also including support for Lightning’s community program.

The new agreement is the biggest sponsorship deal in the foundation club’s brief history.

Lightning CEO, Danielle Smith, said the partnership was a fantastic opportunity for both organisations.

“As professional netball draws larger crowds and broadcast ratings grow, there is tremendous brand exposure across Australia,” Smith said.

“The profile of women’s sport in this country is at an all-time high and this partnership highlights the growth of our sport.

“There are obvious similarities between the two organisations. Customers are at the heart of everything Downer does, just like members and fans are the backbone of our Club. Downer also has a strong focus on building strong relationships with communities just like Lightning.

“For more than a century, Downer has been a proven performer in its field. That successful history is one of the reasons we are proud to join forces.

“We are delighted to be working together and we are looking forward to having Downer join us on this exciting journey in our debut season.”

The Chief Executive Officer of Downer, Grant Fenn, said he was delighted to establish this relationship with Sunshine Coast Lightning.

“Netball is the highest participation sport for women in Australia and Suncorp Super Netball features the best players in the world,” he said.

“Sunshine Coast Lightning is the region’s first national sporting team and it has quickly attracted strong support from the local community, including Sunshine Coast Council and the University of Sunshine Coast.

“The team has made a great start to the season and we look forward to supporting them throughout this exciting and elite competition.”

Mr Fenn added that Downer had a significant presence in Queensland with 3,500 employees across about 40 sites and projects.

Marne Fechner, Acting CEO of Netball Australia, was also on hand for the announcement, as she prepared to speak at USC’s Sports Conference this afternoon.

“We’re thrilled to see Sunshine Coast Lightning go from strength to strength as it cements its position in Suncorp Super Netball,” Fechner said.

“To think that a year ago, this Club did not exist – and now, under Danielle’s leadership, they are playing to packed stadiums, enjoying on court success, and attracting commercial support from the likes of Downer.

“The Sunshine Coast has plenty of reasons to be excited about the future of this Club.”

The significant deal comes on the back of Sunshine Coast’s solid start to the inaugural Super Netball competition, with Lightning undefeated after the first two rounds and currently second on the eight-team ladder.

Sunshine Coast faces Adelaide Thunderbirds in South Australia on Sunday.

About Downer

Downer EDI Limited (Downer) is a leading provider of services to customers in markets including: transport services; rail; mining; utilities services; technology and communications services; and engineering, construction & maintenance. Downer focuses on building strong relationships of trust with its customers, truly understanding and predicting their needs and bringing them world leading insights and solutions. Downer employs about 19,000 people across more than 200 sites and projects, mostly in Australia and New Zealand, but also in the Asia-Pacific region, South America and Southern Africa. For more information on Downer, visit: www.downergroup.com.