IT looks likely for now there will be a second Caps playing in the Premier Soccer League (PSL) next season, following Caps Holdings’ acquisition of Buymore’s franchise last week.
Caps Holdings disposed of its remaining stake in l
eague champions Caps United Football Club in 2002 after initially co-owning the team for close to three years with current club owner, Twine Phiri.
Following a series of trouble-courting adventures at United, Caps Holdings this year reacted with a takeover bid of the club which was not successful. The pharmaceutical company claimed the crisis at the club was bringing their name into disrepute.
The company a few months ago published a press statement expressing worry in the manner the club was run.
Insiders told this paper that the acquisition of the Buymore franchise was a move by the company “to mend the name of Caps by showing how a club is run”.
A source involved in the Caps Holdings/Buymore deal confirmed to IndependentSport this week that the company would, starting next season, use the name “Caps” for their newly acquired franchise.
Names suggested are FC Caps, Caps Pharmaceuticals and Caps Holdings.
“The idea of buying the franchise is to give the team a name that identifies with the company,” the source said. “If you remember that press statement we put in the paper, we stated that the company would do everything possible to protect its name. That is exactly what we are doing now. The real Caps must come out.”
On whether the company would still seek a settlement with Caps United regarding the use of the name, he said: “If it was me I would be uncomfortable to continue using another company’s name. But we will not confront them. I do not think it’s necessary. We are looking at football issues. People do not support a name, they support a football brand.”
This remark, however, seems to stem from a lack of conviction by the company to successfully wrest the name from Caps United completely.
In the contract between Caps Holdings and Phiri, signed when the Harare businessman first bought into the team in 1999, Phiri can legally continue using the name.
Item 8 under Rights Issues states: “The name of the football team shall be maintained as Caps United Football Club until such as time as the board of the new company revisits it.”