New Zealand Cricket (NZC) on Saturday announced a historic partnership with the United States of America Cricket Association (USACA) to help promote the game in that country.
Also involved in the partnership is Australian-based marketing company Insite, and cornerstone investor, Top Bloom and Podar Holding International Pte. Ltd.
The partnership establishes Cricket Holdings America LLC which will hold a majority of the commercial rights to cricket in the United States. This will enable among other things to even stage a franchise based T20 League.
Earlier this year in May NZC and USACA jointly staged the first ICC sanctioned Twenty20 international series in Miami between New Zealand and Sri Lanka.
President of USACA Gladstone Dainty said at the signing of the partnership agreement in Los Angeles that he was pleased with development. "I am delighted the hard work has resulted in a well-resourced outcome that provides USACA with the ability to grow the game from grassroots to the elite level. It should open the door for private investment into cricket in America," said Dainty.
International Cricket Council (ICC) Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat lauded the initiative. "The ICC has long considered the United States as a strategically key market for the growth of the game. We are extremely supportive of the new partnership and their efforts to grow cricket within the United States. We wish them all the best," said Lorgat in a statement.
New Zealand Chief Executive Justin Vaughan said: "With a population of four million, New Zealand is a limited market place. We have historically punched above our weight through leadership and innovation. Cricket Holdings America LLC is a significant step in diversifying our long-term revenue base and in the process, growing a new market."
As part of the partnership, NZC will contribute a range of management, development and coaching resources. In addition, the New Zealand will play an agreed number of matches in the United States. The New Zealand players will also be available to participate in any future T20 Leagues.