Serie A side AS Roma has become the first European club to launch a Kiswahili twitter account.
The account went live for the first time on Wednesday.
— AS Roma English (@ASRomaEN) October 16, 2019
The new Swahili Twitter account was launched just four days after AS Roma used its English-language account to congratulate Eliud Kipchoge on his historic achievement in the INEOS challenge.
The tweet was so well received in Kenya, that Kenyans on twitter (KOT) began asking the club to launch a Swahili account.
Admin amefurahi, asante wote, mnanifundisha swahili
Lala salama 👋 https://t.co/2KLzn8bFzU
— AS Roma English (@ASRomaEN) October 12, 2019
After surprising followers with a reply in Swahili, club president Jim Pallotta used his own personal Twitter account the following morning to confirm that the club would indeed launch an official Roma Swahili account this week.
Kama mnahitaji ukurasa wa As Roma wa Kiswahili kweli mnastahili kuwa nao.
Unawajia muda si mrefu.
Amani na upendo kwenu nyote.
— Jim Pallotta (@jimpallotta13) October 13, 2019
“We’re delighted to launch AS Roma Swahili on Twitter today,” revealed Paul Rogers, Head of Strategy at AS Roma.
“After we launched a Pidgin account in March, we’ve been inundated with requests from fans in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and from other Eastern and South Eastern African countries asking for an official Swahili account.
Considering the passion the fans have for European football, it’s actually surprising that no football club outside of Africa has attempted to communicate daily in Swahili and Pidgin before on social media.
The new Twitter account will allow us to directly engage with these fans in a way that suits them and is consistent with our strategy of breaking down the communication barriers between the club and our global fan base.”
The launch of the new Swahili account means AS Roma now communicate in 14 different languages on social media – with official accounts also in Italian, English, Arabic, Indonesian, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Bosnian, Turkish, Dutch, Farsi, Pidgin and Chinese.