Two of Geelong’s most iconic organisations, GMHBA and the Geelong Cats, have signed a historic 10-year deal that will see them join forces in a unique long term partnership.

GMHBA and the Geelong Cats both have a long and proud history of supporting Geelong and Regional Victoria. This new partnership represents one of the longest deals in AFL history and uniquely demonstrates their shared commitment to the region and its people.

Local unity will be celebrated when the Cats take to the field in 2017 featuring the GMHBA logo on their playing shorts and home game match ball, the first time in over 10 years a Geelong brand has appeared on either item.   

“This is a significant day for us as we partner with the Geelong Cats,” said GMHBA CEO Mark Valena.

“This partnership is anchored in shared values, the delivery of meaningful benefits and our mutual ambition to support the health and wellbeing of our members and their communities.

“Today, we’ve brought the first day of training to the Geelong waterfront and invited our members, staff and the wider community to train with the team, which is what this partnership is all about. Encouraging people to get active put health first and be the best they can be”, said Mr Valena.

 “We’re in this for the long haul and we’re excited about the reach and profile GMHBA will receive through this partnership, which will underpin our continued business success within the core health insurance business and boost our presence in the delivery of front line health care services”.

Geelong Cats Chief Executive Brian Cook said that the partnership was a bold demonstration of one Geelong organisation backing another to take on the best in Australia.

“We are committed to growing our Stadium and our business here for the long haul; so are GMHBA and that’s why this partnership makes such good sense,” Mr. Cook said.

“Both GMHBA and the Cats already do so much to promote health and important community issues, but by coming together we have an exciting opportunity to reach more people and deliver a greater impact,” added Mr Cook. 

Geelong captain Joel Selwood was enthusiastic about the new partnership and what it means to Geelong.

“I love the thought of GMHBA and the Cats becoming a team. Two great organisations coming together to make each other stronger.”

In the first year of the partnership, GMHBA and the Cats will develop a ‘Healthy Heroes’ program that aims to empower young people to make good choices about their health and wellbeing. The program will focus on Year 3 and 4 students across the G21 region, with Geelong Cats players delivering key health messages in schools.