Heineken becomes F1 global partner and could help save Italian Grand Prix
Brewing giant Heineken has signed a multi-year deal to become a global Formula 1 partner – and the move could help to protect the under threat Italian Grand Prix.
Heineken will be F1’s official beer partner and will become title sponsor of three grands prix – including the Italian – as well as having circuit branding at other races. The company will also promote itself and the sport through TV commercials and live fan experiences and events.
Heineken is famed for its digital promotion of the Champions League and Rugby World Cup events and F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone has struggled to exploit social media in the past.
“I’ve started to get a bit more interested [in social media] generally, even before Heineken came in,” Ecclestone said.
“But they’re going to wake me up a bit with social media because I’ve never taken a lot of notice, so we’ll wait and see.
“We like to attract big brands, and this is one of the biggest brands there is. They’ll certainly bring fresh ideas into F1.”
Ecclestone added that Heineken’s sponsorship is “probably going to help” the Italian GP situation.
This year’s event is the last of the current contract and no new deal is yet in place despite lengthy negotiations.
“They need a bit more help,” Ecclestone added. “It’s very, very, very political. It’s getting all the people who are involved to agree on something.”