11 August 2020
Heineken has recently concluded a major sponsorship deal with UEFA. From now on, the Amstel brand will no longer be promoted during the Europa League, but Heineken 0.0. According to Sport Business, this is a deal of € 10 million per year. Heineken will also continue to sponsor the UEFA Champions League with alcoholic Heineken beer.
Hans Erick Tuijt, Director Global Sponsorships at Heineken International, has seen the turnover of non-alcoholic products increase by 40% per year in recent years. Especially in Russia and Europe. This is a result of various health and wellness trends, which are also accelerated by consumer reactions to the corona virus. This growth has contributed to Heineken achieving good results. “We are confident that this category will continue to gain importance in these markets thanks to top innovation in taste,” he says.
By sponsoring both the Champions League and the Europa League, Tuijt believes that “the Heineken brand name can become synonymous with European football as a whole through both products”.
Heineken does run some risk with this strategy. The brewer used to be an alcohol producer, now it is a beer producer, sometimes selling beer with and sometimes beer without or with little alcohol. Won’t all those low-grade alternatives eventually displace or demonize the alcoholic beer?
Tuijt does not think so. “I think there will always be a demand for the original brand, but we need to respond to the growing trends such as interest in low-grade and non-alcoholic drinks, and we think it is a bold move to support these drinks now at the Europe League . “