Category Archives: Sponsorship

Formula One: Lewis shows off his circus skills

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Lewis Hamilton continued his tour of the US chat show circuit appearing on the CBS’s  Late Late Show with James Corden yesterday.

With the show attracting a nightly audience excess of 1.3M, Lewis continues to build his reputation in the US, a market in which  F1 has historically struggled to gain traction.

Through the interview Lewis showed off his skills on a unicycle and talked openly about his ambitions in the music industry.

US chat shows booking appearances from Lewis demonstrate his appeal outside of traditional motorsport output. Bernie Ecclestone will  be hoping Lewis can bring some of this new audience towards F1 in 2016.

Clips of the interview can be seen below:

 

Formula One: Lewis Does Kimmel

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Earlier this week Lewis Hamilton made an appearance on US network ABC chat show Jimmy Kimmel live. Lewis Hamilton appearing on a show such as this in the close season serves to further demonstrate the driver’s market appeal away from the track.

Check out a clip from the show here:

Over the course of this week Lewis has received criticism from the likes of Martin Brundle for electing not to attend the Autosport awards earlier in the week:

 

These remarks possibly prompted Lewis to comment on the ceremony during his interview with Kimmel.

Whilst it is unfortunate Lewis elected not to attend the awards, on balance if the decision was between the Autosport Awards, broadcast to a limited established audience or seek to further broaden the awareness of not only Lewis Hamilton himself but of the sport he represents, appearing on Jimmy Kimmel live to an audience of 2.5M was by far the more logical move.

The current era of F1 drivers are often criticised for lacking personality. Lewis Hamilton,  has over the course of the 2015 made reestablished the playboy image of F1 drivers with a modern twist. This image makes his profile appealing to an audience away from the sport, Lewis has taken on the role of bringing this audience to F1.

 

 

Formula One: McLaren-Honda and Jenson Button renew partnership with Santander

Jenson Button in the garage.

McLaren-Honda have announced  the extension of its partnership with leading bank Santander UK plc.

The agreement is set to continue the partnership for a further five years until the end of 2020, with British driver and 2009 F1™ World Champion, Jenson Button, continuing to feature prominently in Santander campaigns.

Having first partnered together in 2007, McLaren-Honda and Santander have enjoyed a long and successful relationship. Since then, McLaren-Honda and Jenson Button have appeared in many of Santander’s campaigns, including a number of TV adverts, the launch of Santander’s vision for a London Grand Prix in 2012, ‘Secret Santa’ customer surprises and, most recently, the ‘Summer of Cycling’ events on Santander Cycles across London.

McLaren has played an important role in helping establish and grow the Santander brand in the UK, where it is now a household name and has become the nation’s most switched-to bank, attracting one in four new retail customers.

Ekrem Sami, managing director of McLaren Marketing, said: “Santander and McLaren-Honda have enjoyed an incredibly strong and mutually beneficial relationship since 2007. Our renewed partnership demonstrates a well-founded belief in the team’s ability to successfully activate brands around a shared, common vision for the future. I look forward to developing the relationship and hope to see it continue to go from strength to strength for both brands.”

Keith Moor, chief marketing officer for Santander UK, added: “Our sponsorship of McLaren and Jenson Button has played an important role in helping Santander build a strong awareness across the UK, helping to establish ourselves as a scale challenger to the ‘Big 4’ banks with the 1I2I3 Current Account and, more recently, support our launch of the Santander Cycles scheme in London.”

Jenson Button, McLaren-Honda driver, said: “I’m really pleased to continue working with Santander, as is everyone at McLaren-Honda. We’ve enjoyed a great partnership to date and I look forward to that continuing. While first and foremost I’m a racing driver, I’m also a passionate cyclist, and so I’m looking forward to doing more with Santander Cycles and helping encourage more people to get involved.”

So we can expect more FANTASTIC adverts like this in 2016!

Click here to follow the SantanderGP Twitter feed.

Click here to follow Jenson Button on Twitter.

Formula One: Red Bull Racing PUMA partnership confirmed

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Red Bull Racing have just reconfirmed their agreement a long-term partnership with PUMA, as Team Partner and Supplier of Race and Teamwear as well as Licensed Partner for the 2016 Formula One season and beyond.
This new partnership aims to reinvent the concept of Formula One fashion. PUMA will apply a unique and energetic approach to its licensed product collection with Red Bull Racing that will result in innovative, eye-catching designs in lifestyle and replica ranges, as well as race and teamwear.
The strong synergy between these two brands presents an exciting opportunity to activate global marketing initiatives as Red Bull Racing delivers F1 power to PUMA in support of their mission to become the fastest sport brand in the world. The team will be part of PUMA’s elite partnership portfolio, joining the likes of Usain Bolt, Arsenal Football Club and the Italian National Football team.
Red Bull Racing’s history with PUMA goes all the way back to its first years in F1 and this new agreement revitalizes a highly successful relationship enjoyed by the two between 2007 and 2010.
Commenting on the reinvigoration of the partnership between the team and PUMA;
Christian Horner, Red Bull Racing Team Principal said: “We are looking forward to working with PUMA once again. This new partnership fits in with a global partnership that already exists between Red Bull and PUMA, involving athletes in other disciplines, the Wings For Life charity and various other Red Bull projects. The licensed collection that will launch in 2016 is looking fantastic; I’m sure the fans are going to love it.”
Björn Gulden, Chief Executive Officer for PUMA added: “PUMA and Red Bull have a great brand synergy, and this new partnership with Red Bull Racing is another big statement for PUMA. There is huge potential within the wider Red Bull organisation to build upon this partnership and explore new territory, and there is an enthusiasm amongst both companies to do so. Red Bull Racing is a great team with massive appeal, and this is another positive step in our desire to become the Fastest Sport Brand in the World.”

Formula One: CONFIRMED – Red Bull TAG Heuer with Ilmor support

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From the milliseconds that separate victory from defeat to the finely balanced and perfectly measured rhythm of a racing engine, in motorsport timing is everything.
As the curtain falls on the 2015 Formula One season and the sport gears up for next year’s challenge, the timing is right for Red Bull Racing to reveal that the team’s 2016 F1 car will race with a power unit carrying the name of motorsport’s most iconic timing brand – TAG Heuer.
The new partnership, which represents a shift away from F1’s conventional supply systems, will see TAG Heuer take up naming rights of the team’s power unit, which will be supplied by Renault. The new car will be christened the Red Bull Racing-TAG Heuer RB12.
Deepening the relationship between the team and the legendary timing house, which can call on more than half a century of heritage at the cutting edge of motorsport, TAG Heuer will become the Official Timekeeper, Official Watch Partner and Team Performance Partner of the Red Bull Racing team from 2016 in a multi-year partnership.
Welcoming the new partnership, Christian Horner, Team Principal, Red Bull Racing, said: “TAG Heuer and Red Bull are two transcendent brands which have both a passion for racing and a drive to do things differently, and this unique collaboration is further evidence of that. TAG Heuer has been an icon in the world of Formula One for many years and we’re delighted that they’ve chosen to continue their association with the sport by teaming up with us. Our shared values of innovation and a desire to stand out from the crowd make this one of the most exciting partnerships in F1. We are also pleased to see Renault confirm its long-term commitment to F1 and would like to thank them for their contribution to the team since 2007. Their technical partnership with Ilmor gives us confidence, and we look forward to the 2016 season.”
Jean-Claude Biver, CEO of TAG Heuer and President of the LVMH Watch Division, added: “Formula One is deeply-rooted in TAG Heuer’s DNA, and Red Bull Racing is a young, dynamic and driven team, which perfectly fits with our marketing strategy. It will give TAG Heuer great visibility and allow us to make our partnership exciting, different and innovative. Our motto #DontCrackUnderPressure will be the guiding principle behind all our actions with the support of the Red Bull Racing team and its highly contagious enthusiasm.”

Formula One: Opinion – Formula Finances

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As teams prepare for the final qualifying session of the season, what started as murmurs around teams requesting advances on 2015 prize money from Formula One Management (FOM) is heading towards a deafening crescendo with Manor Marussia, Sahara Force India, and  the Sauber F1 team reportedly making requesting support.

The distribution model under which teams are allocated and receive prize funds was established a number of years ago. The model has not changed. The distribution model splits prize fund payments to the team through the season following the season in which the funding was earned. Once a paying position is achieved (i.e. higher than 10th place in the WCC) the team are assured payment for multiple seasons.  Payments are only made in season.

It is the payment structure teams appear to struggle with. Since requests have been lodged it should be assumed the teams in question have insufficient funding or credit rating in place to sustain team plans from December to March.  The Force India F1 Team found themselves in a similar situation in the lead up to the 2015 season, commenting that ‘close season’ is the most expensive period for a team and the only period when they as not getting paid through prize funds or commercial agreements.

Formula One Teams are companies in their own right; they are independent of Formula One. They are masters of their own destiny. They develop their own commercial agreements, agree to the terms of funding distribution models, and should be empowered to budget accordingly. Teams find themselves in a predicament of funding shortfalls in the ‘off season’ because they have made decisions to spend money they, in reality, did not have. A complaint Bernie Ecclestone has often publically voiced.

If a team is not capable of planning capital expenditure over a rolling 12 month period do they really deserve to represent the pinnacle of motorsport?

Perhaps it is cynical to view Formula One teams in this regard, to suggest they should operate as first and foremost as a business, perhaps it would diminish from the racing spirt, but would a more calculated approach to racing really be such a bad thing? To achieve a level of sustained security as to which teams are on the grid and what their position is within the sport may make investment a more attractive proposition.

Looking back to early part of 2015, the financial challenges faced by the Force India team were clear for all to see, the team failed to attend the majority of pre-season testing stating the car they would begin the season with was essentially the 2014 challenger updated to comply with 2015 safety regulations. This hybrid 2014/2015 car was the result of severe budget restrictions limiting payments to 3rd party suppliers. Working to a limited budget the team used this car for the first 8 races of the year, developing the 2015 challenger once prize funding and sponsorship revenue came back to the team. Through these first 8 races, the team amassed 31 points, an average of 3.8 points per race. Once the team were able to introduce the 2015 challenger they achieved a further 89 points over 10 races, (average 8.9 per race) the culmination of these 2 vehicles have left  Force India with 120 points heading into Abu Dhabi, with 5th place in the constructors championship assured.

But what if they had taken a different route? Had the team stuck with hybrid 2014/15 challenger for the entire season and for the sake of argument maintained their points scoring ratio of 3.8 per race they would be heading into Abu Dhabi with 70 points battling with Lotus and Toro Rosso for the 5th they have already secured. Had the introduced the non-budget constrained 2015 challenger from Melbourne and assuming a the afore mentioned average of 8.9 points per race they could have been looking at a total point’s tally of 160 points, but still be in 5th place with an outside chance of achieving 4th against Red Bull Racing.

This simplistic maths ignores the variable points tally other teams would have been able to achieve had Force India’s performances differed from those actually seen, but the point is in both scenarios the possible outcomes in terms of constructor championship performance  do not differ greatly if at all.

The very fact that Force India are again requesting  early payment of prize funds ahead of the 2016 season suggests the team went the wrong way, the desire to race, to compete, overtook the business rationale, perhaps this is what racing is all about, but is it sustainable? Force India over achieved through apparently over spending and are now reliant on external influences to assure 2016 plans.  This is not a criticism of any specific team, rather an observation of the culture of racing.

Across business the way in which a Formula One Pit Crew services a car in under 3 seconds is often cited as the epitome of teamwork, individuals working together towards a common goal. These lessons in teamwork have changed the business world. Perhaps the world of business can give something back to Formula One, and teach teams that a budget is something you work within, not something you take to Bernie when the numbers turn red.

Formula One: Sauber F1 team announce Premium Partnership with CNBC for 2016

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The Sauber F1 Team have announced CNBC as a Premium Partner for the 2016 FIA Formula One Championship. CNBC is the leading global broadcaster of live business and financial news and information. This is the first time the Sauber F1 Team has partnered with an international broadcaster.

CNBC and the Sauber F1 Team will use the global Formula One media platform to maximise their potentials, as well as to reach a broader audience around the globe. The CNBC branding will appear on the rear wing end plates of the Sauber C35, on the drivers’ overalls of Marcus Ericsson and Felipe Nasr, as well as on the team’s clothing.

To launch the partnership with CNBC, the logo will be visible on the rear wing end plates of the Sauber C34-Ferrari during the 2015 Formula One season finale at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix this weekend.

Monisha Kaltenborn, Team Principal of the Sauber F1 Team:
“CNBC and the Sauber F1 Team have many common values such as accuracy, speed and credibility. Both companies maintain these values on a global level. It applies to both of us that we face a tough competition in our field with the objective being perfection. These similarities build a strong basis for a solid partnership.”

KC Sullivan, President and Managing Director of CNBC International:
“This partnership joins two organisations with strong heritage and exceptional ambition. Working with the Sauber F1 Team, CNBC is joining a family of professionals and corporate partners committed to the standards of excellence and performance that elite sports demand.”

Formula One: Infiniti Red Bull Racing continue to tease with further partnership extension announcements

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Infiniti Red Bull Racing has announced an extension of its partnership with Sabelt into 2017, continuing a long and successful relationship with the Italian safety equipment manufacturer.
This partnership extension is a continuation of a long and successful supply relationship between Sabelt and Infiniti Red Bull Racing, which has been in place since the team’s inception in 2004. Sabelt have provided high quality safety belts and fittings for all our drivers in the team’s 11 year history in the sport.
Sabelt was founded in 1972 as an Original Equipment Manufacturer of seat belts, and went from supplier to partner of Infiniti Red Bull Racing in 2005.  The Italian company has pioneered innovative manufacturing techniques for producing reliable, light weight safety equipment for extreme applications. As such, Sabelt has established itself as an industry leader in safety harness equipment across a range of top-level motorsports, as well as aerospace and automotive applications.
In addition the team has announced  an extension of its longstanding partnership with wheel manufacturer OZ Racing for a further three years until the end of 2018.

The wheels supplied by OZ Racing are exceptionally lightweight, whilst at the same time easily withstanding the extreme forces experienced on track; making them a great partner for Infiniti Red Bull Racing.
OZ Racing is an Italian company with its main headquarters and production facility in San Martino di Lupari, Padua, Italy. They sell light alloy wheels through a global network into multiple sectors, including: racing, after-market, motorbike, and OEM.
OZ has been involved in motorsport for more than 30 years as supplier of top teams across a variety of global race series. The quality and performance of OZ’s racing products is evidenced in the number of victories and World Titles their customers have achieved during a long history in motorsport. OZ use these years of racing experience to develop a superior performance product, offering wheels which combine cutting edge material and manufacturing technology, quality and safety.
Claudio Bernoni, CEO, OZ SpA: “Our partnership with Infiniti Red Bull Racing demonstrates the value, competence and reliability of our products. For us, this is the best opportunity to test our products in extreme conditions and transfer the experience to our wheels dedicated to street use.”
Christian Horner, Team Principal: “We select our innovation partners carefully, and in each case have selected what we believe to be the best available product for the job – as well as a great partner to work with. OZ Racing are no exception to this, and we’re pleased they will be continuing as a partner to deliver exceptional products to us for another three years”.

Formula One: Ahead of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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Through the continued Starwood Hotels and Resorts partnership with the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team, Lewis Hamilton recently filmed a new short film at the Sheraton Park Lane Hotel in London to showcase Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) membership. As Lewis and the team prepare for the final race of the year in Abu Dhabi, Starwood Hotels and Resorts have shared behind the scenes images taken during the filming where we see Lewis, fresh from filming his Zoolander 2 cameo, is keen to get behind the camera.

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Ahead of the launch of the #TravelLikeLewis campaign on Thursday you can preview the finished film here:

Starwood Hotels and Resorts choosing Lewis Hamilton and the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 team as ambassadors for SPG membership further demonstrates the value of F1 engagement and the sports  audience reach. It also goes to show a Formula One drivers job extends far beyond requirements at the track.

To see more from #TravelLikeLewis you can follow SPG on twitter by clicking here.