Formula 1 announces global partnership with Heineken

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Dutch beer company Heineken has become a new global partner of Formula 1 following the announcement of a long-mooted multi-year deal on Thursday in Montreal.

Reports in the weeks leading up to the Canadian Grand Prix weekend suggested that Formula One Management was on the verge of announcing a new ground-breaking sponsorship agreement with Heineken. The details of the deal were made public on Thursday.

As a global partner of F1, Heineken will enjoy title partnership for three races per season from 2017 onwards.

It will also be the title partner for the Italian Grand Prix at Monza this September, which will formally be known as the Formula 1 Gran Premio Heineken D’Italia 2016.

Heineken will also be present at F1 events as the sport’s exclusive global beer partner, but will not be present on any of the cars.

Heineken and Formula One Management will also work closely together on promoting road safety and the informing people of the dangers of drink-driving.

“Heineken will create fully integrated global F1 ‘Open your World’ manifesto and “If You Drive, Never Drink” campaigns,” a statement announcing the deal reads.

“Activations will include F1 circuit branding, TV commercials, digital activations, live fan experiences and events, dedicated PR initiatives, and packaging/point-of-sale activations. David Coulthard and Sir Jackie Stewart will be ambassadors for the respective campaigns.”

“Formula One is bigger than a race. It is a global event. F1 represents a unique opportunity for Heineken to engage with existing and potential consumers in important growth markets,” Heineken senior director global Gianluca Di Tondo said.

“F1 delivers in three specific areas; strong commercial opportunities; expansion of our responsible drinking platform in new and innovative ways; and enabling skill transfers between F1 and our employees.

“This partnership complements our existing global platforms, enabling us to reach F1’s huge spectator numbers and 400 million unique television viewers every year.

“The hallmark of our long and successful relationships with UEFA Champions League, Rugby World Cup and the James Bond franchise is our passion to excite our consumers. We will be bringing this passion to Formula One.”

F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone added: “Heineken is a premium international brand with a super reputation for first class marketing. I am very pleased to welcome them to the Formula One family and look forward to the scale and quality of their activation at and away from F1 Events.

“We are both in the innovation and enjoyment business and I hope that this is the start of a long and special relationship. When I have a beer, I have always been happy with a Heineken.

“Some time ago I started a ‘Think Before You Drive’ campaign at F1 Events. I am pleased that this important initiative now has such strong and committed support from Heineken, through its “If You Drive, Never Drink” campaign.

“We will now evolve and reinforce these messages in a way that reflects the Heineken personality and values.”