Bright Stars Football Club has been expending at least Shs 5 million every month on the transportation of players for training. However, with the acquisition of new shirt sponsors, Yoshini Trading Limited, that is expected to change.
On Monday August 13, at their home in Mwererwe off Semuto-Kapeeka road, during the unveiling of Yoshini (a Japanese vehicle trading company), in a one year deal worth Shs 147 million, Bright Stars are for the first time, also going to acquire a bus of their own, as a property of the club.
Bright Stars CEO, Matiya Mugwanya said: “The new bus will be branded in Bright Stars colours. The club will be able to advertise itself there, which we could not do with the the buses we hired. But most importantly, we are not going to be spending Shs 170,000 daily like we have in the past. Instead, we will spend Shs 70,000, which cuts our expenditure to Shs 2.1 million.”
In addition, Mugwanya said that travelling to Arua or Paidha for a league game cost the club Shs 2 million for renting a bus. Now, they will only spend Shs 600,000 on fuel. The reprieve that the new bus brings is far reaching.
Fred Kajoba, Bright Stars coach noted that getting to their training ground had been a challenge for players and staff because they do not stay in one place. The hired bus could not pick everyone from their residence, because of cost.
Yet, getting a taxi to Mwererwe was close to impossible. Most taxis boarded from Matugga take passengers headed to Semuto or Kapeeka, a journey of Shs 5000. And since Mwererwe is just off the Semuto highway, about 10kms from Matugga, one had to pay for the full journey, for a distance, that ordinarily costs Shs 1000.
The alternative would be jumping on a Boda-Boda, which also, would charge one Shs 4000. But now, with a club bus, Kajoba feels there will be no hustle getting to Mwererwe especially during these tough economic times.
Bright Stars chairman Ronald Mutebi said that these are all signs of a club steadily growing, as he praised Yoshini for choosing them. Shunsuke Nakanishi, the President of Yoshini added that their association with Bright Stars is based on the good management of the club, which projects progress.
Last season, Bright Stars finished eighth (38 points), one position better than the 2016/2017 season, where they finished with 34 points, and only survived relegation on the last day.
Then, Bright Stars were barely surviving. Players and technical staff had not been paid for nine months. But before the beginning of the 2017/2018 season, they got new shareholders in Soltilo Uganda, a company owned by former Japanese international footballer, Keisuke Honda, to supplement shirt sponsors Lato Milk’s Shs 130 million two-year deal, which Yoshino has replaced.