McLaren has signed a new multi-year deal with long-time sponsor Johnnie Walker, despite reports suggesting that the Diageo-owned brand will move to Force India.
A decline in on-track performance has led to a sponsor exodus at McLaren, with Hugo Boss and Tag Heuer, most notably, jumping ship to Mercedes and Red Bull respectively.
Johnnie Walker was expected to join the fray, with its sister brand Smirnoff already sponsoring Force India.
However, McLaren has managed to retain the whisky brand, which has been sponsoring the team since 2005.
“Johnnie Walker’s renewed agreement with McLaren-Honda underlines our belief in, and commitment to, the strength and durability of long-standing commercial partnerships,’’ McLaren Technology Group CEO Ron Dennis said.
“A partnership that has existed for more than a decade provides each party with greater levels of strength and depth – huge positives in today’s fast-moving consumer society.”
“The Johnnie Walker brand is synonymous with quality, and, like ourselves, they’re not only incredibly proud of their heritage, but keen to push the limit in a hugely dynamic and constantly shifting marketplace. At McLaren-Honda, we absolutely share that ambition.
Last year, McLaren signed a contract with champagne-maker Chandon.
by Rachit Thukral