Heineken has taken a step closer to binding its business to midweek football across Europe, striking a deal with UEFA for its Amstel brand to become the official beer of the Europa League.
Amstel completes the current sponsors’ lineup for the league and is on board for three seasons.
The announcement pulls the beer brand back into football, having previously been a sponsor of the UEFA Champions League from 1994 to 2005. Its sister brand Heineken has since replaced it as the beer of Europe’s premier club competition though the new deal gives Amstel a chance to recapture old football ties and bolster awareness, particularly in the UK.
BT Sport is set to show all the matches of the tournament, giving sponsors an opportunity to get their brands out in front of more eyeballs than has previously been possible. For Heineken, the deal means it can promote both Amstel’s sponsorship of the Europa League and Heineken’s Champions League as the beer of choice for midweek football fans through Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
"Amstel is a brand with historical heritage in European professional football and thus a welcome and notable addition to the UEFA Europa League commercial platform,” said Guy-Laurent Epstein, marketing director of UEFA Events SA. “We are delighted to be welcoming Amstel once again into the European professional club football landscape.”
Amstel, which hasn’t enjoyed as much marketing support as some of its other Heineken stabelmates, had a 0.4 per cent share of the global beer market in 2014, according to Euromonitor. What little recent Amstel marketing there is, plays up its quality credentials, which the beer will no doubt be looking to heighten around the premier football competition.