IT started over a conversation about art in San Francisco and culminated in a wave of publicity that took Glasgow and then the internet by storm.

The birth of Kingsley has been a long time coming but the new Partick Thistle mascot certainly made the most of his unveiling yesterday.

The brainchild of Mike Wilkins, an American investment advisor from California, and the design work of David Shrigley, the Turner Prize nominated artist, Kingsley is the new public face of the Jags on matchday at Firhill.

The sun-shaped character went viral online in the hours after he was given his first airing in public as the Jags announced a sponsorship deal with Kingsford Capital Management.

It is no ordinary link-up between a club and a financial backer, the deal conceived thousands of miles away several years ago and finally being made public to incredible effect on Monday afternoon.

It sees a businessman with no previous connection to Scottish football, and one which had never heard of the Firhill side, hand over his cash after following Shrigley's lead and falling in love with the Jags at first sight.

"It all came about in a bit of a backward way," Wilkins said.

"I've been a long-time fan of David's artwork. I met him for dinner three years ago in San Francisco and the conversation turned to football.

"I asked him what his favourite club was and he said Partick Thistle - it was the first time I'd heard those two words put together.

"We spoke more and more and Kingsford Capital have done a lot of sports sponsorship in the States with the likes of basketball sides Golden State Warriors and Oakland Athletics and we were thinking of doing the same thing for a football club.

"I asked David if he'd be willing to do the logo for any club we chose and he said if it was Partick Thistle then he would.

"I had a number of clubs on a long list but I didn't have any connection with them.

"It was about what might work and who would be open to new ideas and who would be unencumbered by the weight of tradition and Partick Thistle fitted all of those when we whittled down the list."

The deal with Thistle may represent Wilkins' first foray into Scottish football but the Jags are not the only team the Californian cheers on.

He is a shareholder in the newly crowned NBA champions Golden State Warriors but will now add Firhill to his list of venues to visit for the new season.

"I have the notion of the club's special place within Scotland more from the stories I've heard rather than from the pitch as I haven't seen a game yet," Wilkins said.

"We were greeted by the club historian when we first arrived and were given the background of the club. You get a sense of the history of the club and its ties with the city.

"The full impact hasn't hit me until I get to see a match and I'll be over for some of them but it's a long ride from San Francisco. Hopefully I'll be over four or five times over the course of a season."

When Wilkins makes his next trip across the Atlantic and lands at Firhill, he will see Alan Archibald's side in action for the first time in their third season in the Premiership.

The Jags boss is in the process of bolstering his squad ahead of the big kick-off as he looks to improve on an eighth place finish this term.

And Wilkins is confident he will enjoy his match day experience in red and yellow as he looks forward to the top flight campaign.

"I'm trying to brush up but I'm still a novice," he said.

"I'm a football fan but I'm new to it and I started watching it in 2010. My family lived in London that year and my son was at the right age for football fanaticism and he brought me along.

"I appreciate the style and quality of play here. You watch games in the MLS and you can see the difference. It's a labour of love both from a sport and an art side so the two of those walk hand in hand."

It is not every day that an American businessman with no previous connection to our game invests his cash into a Scottish club.

Nor it is every day that the launch of a new mascot goes viral online, attracting more than three million views on Twitter and seeing the club take calls from news agencies in America.

This is no ordinary deal, made in no ordinary circumstances, but one that has made an extraordinary impact already.

And Wilkins is confident there will be a mutual benefit after Thistle and Kingsley grabbed the headlines.

He said: "The sponsorship will go towards the players and towards improving the experience for the fans. It should be a benefit.

"Our firm is not retail orientated and our sponsorships in the past hasn't been to get people to say , 'let's go to Kingsford Capital on our way home.'

"It's about brand building with the Warriors. It's to get people thinking about us in a certain light.

"To bring in an artist like David for the main sponsorship and having giveaways designed by other artists gives us a certain look and reputation. It's not about 'please go and buy our product."