The Basketball Africa League (BAL) and the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) have announced a significant five-year extension of their collaboration. This partnership ensures that the BAL will continue to hold games at the BK Arena in Kigali, Rwanda, for each season, including the BAL Playoffs and Finals in 2024, 2026, and 2028. Alongside this, the BAL and RDB will work together on youth development initiatives and social impact programs.

This extension solidifies the involvement of “Visit Rwanda,” the country’s marketing and tourism initiative, as a Foundational and Host Partner of the BAL. Through this agreement, Visit Rwanda will maintain visibility on BAL team uniforms and at the BAL Combine. RwandAir, the national airline of Rwanda, will also remain the Official Airline Partner of the BAL, facilitating travel to and from Kigali for select BAL teams and staff.

Amadou Gallo Fall, President of the BAL, expressed his appreciation for the Rwanda Development Board’s integral role in the league’s launch and continued success over the first three seasons. The collaboration renewal will bring BAL games, youth development programs, and social impact initiatives to Rwanda for years to come.

CEO of RDB, Clare Akamanzi, expressed excitement about extending their collaboration with the Basketball Africa League. The partnership has already demonstrated tremendous success and return on investment, benefiting the Rwandan economy by 9.1 million dollars in the first two years. Akamanzi emphasized the BAL’s unifying power and Rwanda’s commitment to showcasing tourism, investment opportunities, talent development, and more to the world.

RwandAir CEO, Yvonne Makolo, expressed pride in their partnership with the BAL and highlighted the positive impact of bringing world-class basketball to Rwanda. Makolo recognized the unifying effect of sports and emphasized RwandAir’s dedication to delivering exceptional customer service as they connect fans and players through their extensive route network.

Rwanda’s Minister of Sports, Hon Aurore Mimosa Munyangaju, hailed the partnership renewal as a testament to their commitment to being the home of the most prestigious basketball league in Africa. The collaboration strengthens the sports industry, focusing on talent development, capacity strengthening initiatives, and job creation opportunities for Rwandans.

The recent BAL Finals held at BK Arena saw Egypt’s Al Ahly triumph over Senegal’s AS Douanes, reaching fans in 214 countries and territories in 17 languages. Alongside the playoffs and finals, the BAL and NBA Africa organized various youth development and social impact programs in Rwanda, including collaborations with RDB. These activities encompassed Jr. NBA, Special Olympics, coaches clinics, environmental initiatives, innovation summits, and workshops for young women as part of BAL4HER—an initiative promoting gender equality and celebrating women in the African sports industry.

Foundational Partners of the BAL include NIKE, Jordan Brand, Wilson, and New Fortress Energy (NFE), while marketing partners include the Attorney General Alliance (AGA-Africa), Envol City, Hennessy, SERTEM, and Société Pétroliere (SP). This extended collaboration between the BAL and Rwanda signifies a significant step in showcasing the league’s growth and its commitment to making a positive social impact in the region.