Basketball ACT (BACT) and the University of Canberra Union (UCU) are delighted to formally announce the transfer of the Canberra Capitals to the University of Canberra as of Today. The change means that the ownership and management of the Capitals transfers from BACT to UCU, including the WNBL licence, all player contracts, assets, and the Capitals merchandise and brand.
BACT and UCU have signed a long-term collaboration agreement where the organisations will work together for the development, promotion, and administration of basketball; the promotion of Canberra and the region; and to attract the best basketball players and coaching staff to Canberra.
BACT will retain ownership and management of the Capitals Academy SEABL team, plus the Gunners and the Gunners Academy, as well as local representative and social teams. UCU will own and manage the WNBL team, which will be known as the University of Canberra Capitals.
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BACT CEO Tony Fraser and UCU CEO Joe Roff agree that the move is a great deal for the players, the sport of basketball in Canberra, UC, and BACT. The transfer was approved by the respective Boards of Directors, but needs the ratification of Basketball Australia and the WNBL Commission, which will be formally requested in the coming weeks.
It is expected Joe Roff will be named CEO of the newly formed entity.
BACT President David Leaney stated his appreciation for the Capitals’ principal sponsor, the Tradies, for its long-term support and understanding during the transition, as well as the Club’s ongoing contribution to sport in Canberra. He said “this transfer changes the principal sponsorship for the Capitals, but BACT is keen to maintain links with the Tradies, who have been fantastic sponsors and supporters. We hope to still have them involved in basketball in the future.”
“We have enjoyed our role with the Capitals and the opportunity to support the city’s number one women’s sporting team,” the Tradies CEO Rob Docker added. “Given this new direction, we will now sit down and evaluate our plans for the future but, given our proud track record in Canberra sport, we will always have an involvement.”
“The Canberra community has a significant amount of pride in the achievements of the Capitals to date and the University is committed to building on the work of Basketball ACT in having established one of Australia’s leading women’s sporting teams and programs,” Mr Roff said.
“The University is committed to supporting women in sport where often female athletes are unable to dedicate themselves to their sport in the same way as male athletes. The transfer will enable Capitals players to establish flexible working, living and studying arrangements through the University so that they are able to have a stronger focus on basketball while at the same time preparing for life after basketball.”
Ms Graf said the partnership was great news for sport in the region.
“As the University’s coach in residence and the Capitals head coach, I’m in a unique position to understand the strengths of these two great Canberra institutions and the huge potential of what they can achieve together.
“We’ll create a base from which the team can flourish and a fantastic environment for students and researchers.
“As Australia’s leading sporting university, with a wide range of sport related courses, world class research, and state of the art facilities, the University of Canberra offers unique opportunities to integrate the Capitals with the University community.”
Of the transfer Basketball ACT CEO Tony Fraser said “This deal provides an array of fantastic opportunities for Capitals players, coaches and fans and is a hugely positive step in the continued growth of the sport of basketball in Canberra.”