Heineken on Thursday revealed its plans to enter Formula 1 with a major multi-year sponsorship deal that will include track branding and title sponsorship for the Italian Grand Prix. The Dutch brewery giant revealed its planned partnership with Formula One Management in an event in the Montreal paddock on Thursday.
The planned deal, which Motorsport said has options to last until the end of 2023 and could be worth as much as $250 million over that period, will give Heineken title sponsorship of three races each season from 2017 plus track branding at six further racing events.
Central to Heineken’s strategy of maximizing the exposure of its F1 partnership will be through the effective use of social media, an area where the racing channels had fallen behind other sports in the recent years.
The goal is to have its trackside logos broadcast to millions of homes around the world or use pictures of F1 cars on special edition bottles. Heineken wants to ramp up marketing efforts in a way that perhaps only Red Bull has been able to do so far.
Meanwhile by copying Red Bull’s style, to tap into the estimated $200 million potential new Heineken customers it thinks F1 can bring on board, Heineken will not only lift its brand globally but also boost the sport’s profile around the world.
As part of the multi-year deal, Heineken will have pouring, activation and access rights across the majority of F1 events. These will include live fan experiences and events, PR initiatives and a strong push on television and social media.
Heineken’s first race F1 title deal will be this year’s Italian Grand Prix, where Heineken ‘s logos is said to appear trackside at the remaining races of the season apart from Abu Dhabi race. But it will have no presence or official sponsorship of any F1 teams. However, it remains in talks with several F1 teams about a possible partnership.
In addition, Heineken also plans to use its F1 partnership to further promote its responsible drinking campaign, which is headlined “If you Drive, never Drink.”
Heineken is no stranger when it comes to this kind of partnership. The brewery giant has already gained a lot of experienced in making the most of the sponsorship campaigns. Heineken has an ongoing partnership with UEFA through the Champions League and the Rugby World Cup, which has shown that there is a mutual benefit to such partnerships.
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