The deal will see Bud Light – which is the best-selling beer in the US, but only launched in the UK last year – replace Carlsberg, which ended the sponsorship after 22 years in order to shift its marketing focus towards festivals.
The launch of Bud Light helped Budweiser overtake Foster’s last year to become the second biggest beer brand, by supermarket sales, behind only AB InBev stablemate Stella Artois, according to Nielsen data.
Bud Light, which has a 3.5% alcohol content, has become known for its catchphrase, “Dilly dilly”, in the campaign by Wieden & Kennedy.
Aina Fuller, marketing manager at Bud Light UK, said: “Since hitting the UK in 2017, Bud Light has ‘Dilly dilly’d’ across the country, and seen some of the strongest growth across the category. This exciting new partnership allows Bud Light to share its passion for football with British fans, allowing us to engage an even wider audience.”
When Carlsberg announced in February it was ending its sponsorship, Liam Newton, vice-president of brands at Carlsberg UK, said: “We get most value out of partnerships that create rich content and fantastic brand experiences and enable us to tell our unique story, history and heritage.”
But speaking to Campaign recently, Richard Barker, managing director at M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment, said that England’s successful World Cup run, the visibility of players on digital channels, and the popularity of both the players and manager Gareth Southgate meant the value of the sponsorship had “gone through the roof”.