Gaming and betting operator Interwetten has reaffirmed its commitment to the Nigerian market, following entry earlier this year, and has named ex-Everton and Nigeria forward Yakubu Ayegbeni as a brand ambassador.

Praised as “the first time in its history Interwetten will partner with an official ambassador on this large scale,” it follows the firm’s initial moves into the market in March following licence approval from the National Lottery Regulatory Commission.

Yakubu, who boasts a record of 95 goals in 252 Premier League games, is to be integrated into all advertising activities as Interwetten aims to display a “commitment to Nigeria as a major market for the company”.

Yakubu explained: “When choosing my partners, it is really important to me that the chemistry is right and that was immediately obvious after the first talks.

“Interwetten has been a reliable and serious partner in sports for decades, in countries all over Europe. It will be a very exciting partnership and homecoming for me too!”

As well as featuring in major print and online advertisements countrywide, special appearances will be carried out and a ‘Yakubu Tip’ feature will be prominent on social media and via each week. The two parties will also participate in local social projects.

Dominik Beier, speaker of the board at Interwetten, commented: “We are very happy that with Yak we can embrace great things. The passion for football is enormous in Nigeria, footballers are idols. It was therefore clear to us that, for the first time in the history of the company, we would be looking to partner with a former Nigerian professional footballer as our official ambassador. 

“In Yakubu we feel we have found that perfect partner and look forward to experiencing the excellence of Nigerian football fans for ourselves. We want to ensure that our customers in Nigeria receive the highest quality product, so we were also looking for someone who had set an example of this during his career. We are just at the beginning of a long journey in Nigeria, now it really starts.”