Heineken's International Champions Cup sponsorship will have huge global reach

Heineken has added to its football sponsorship portfolio after striking a multi-year partnership with the International Champions Cup and ESPN.

The deal with competition organiser Relevent Sports makes Heineken the presenting sponsor and official beer of the annual global football competition which features some of Europe’s top clubs including Celtic, Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Manchester United going head-to-head.

The tournament will host fixtures across Europe, the US, Australia and China and as part of its sponsorship deal Heineken will run national retail promotions in each host country as well as match day activities.

The beer brand also reached a media agreement with ESPN that will extend its sponsorship presence across all ESPN broadcasts of the International Champions Cup.

Discussing the latest addition to its sports sponsorship Heineken’s US chief marketing officer, Nuno Teles, said: “Soccer has been a central tenet of Heineken's global heritage, and our sponsorship of International Champions Cup solidifies our role in sustaining soccer's fantastic momentum in the US.”

"Together we will be bringing some of the best European soccer stars to the states, elevating the experience for fans and cementing soccer's role in the national consciousness."

The deal marks a continuation of Heineken’s efforts to apply its long standing relationship with football to the US where the sport’s popularity is accelerating. The brand is a sponsor of the MLS and has run a number of marketing campaigns such as the recent Rivalry Week, which saw it create a life-sized foosball table for fans to compete in.

The 2016 International Champions Cup runs from 23 July to 13 August and will see 15 of Europe’s top clubs compete.

Get The Drum Newsletter

Build your marketing knowledge by choosing from daily news bulletins or a weekly special.