The writing is on the wall so to speak, as locally owned and operated, Navigation Homes, are now the proud new naming sponsors for Counties Manukau Rugby.
With the opportunity arising after loyal sponsor, ECOlight, decided that 2017 would be their final year as the stadium sponsor. The stadium in Pukekohe, for the next three years, will be called Navigation Homes Stadium.
Counties Manukau Rugby CEO, Bart Hoggard, says the sponsorship venture transpired after a discussion Navigation Homes owners, Aaron and Nathan Hall, about community involvement.
“We met with Aaron and Nathan, who were looking for an opportunity to invest in a community project or organisation. Counties Manukau Rugby puts a significant amount of resources and effort into developing community rugby in the schools and clubs within our region, and they were keen to explore ways in which they could support this work. As part of our discussion, we mentioned that we were about to start looking for a new stadium sponsor, which is when Aaron said that Navigation Homes would be keen to take on that role.”
Both Nathan Hall and new business partner, Ryan Keegan, are incredibly excited about the new venture.
“Rugby is a great part of the Franklin culture and we have a lot of good rugby history in the community. We have been confirmed as one of the ten build partners for Paerata Rise and want to be heavily involved in the development. Paerata rise is being built on the Wesley College land, where Jonah Lomu went to school. He played his club rugby at Counties, so it ties in perfectly.”
Navigation Homes are also the sponsors of both the junior and senior rugby teams at Karaka.
Upon asking Nathan who his favourite Counties player was, he was quick to say the former All Blacks halfback, Augustine Pulu, as he plays for both Counties and Karaka.
Bart Hoggard believes the combination between the two organisations are very complementary.
“Navigation Homes is based on similar principles and values as Counties Manukau Rugby, so I think it will be an extremely compatible partnership. Navigation Homes is a locally owned and operated business focused on building quality houses for local people, and the union is focused on ‘Growing the Pride of Counties.’ The main objective of both parties is to assist with the growth and development of the local community.”
As the year begins to wrap up, Counties Rugby are in the process of finalising their Steelers squad for 2018.
“I am happy to confirm that Sam Henwood, the 2017 Steelers Player of the Year, has recently signed a contract that will keep him at Counties for the next two years. We have huge expectations for the Steelers next year and are looking forward to creating a festival atmosphere at Navigation Homes Stadium.”
CAPTION: The team at Navigation Homes are proud to become the new naming sponsors for Counties Manukau Rugby. From left: Tiryn and Paul Manu, Michelle O’Neill Manu, Kelly and Mila Moore, Tish and Nate Keegan, Navigation Homes, Ryan Keegan, Counties Manukau Rugby CEO, Bart Hoggard, Navigation Homes Nathan Hall, Dave Ellery, Aaron Withers and Sandra Holmes. Children in front: Dylan and Morgan Manu and Jackson Keegan.