Pepsi sets sight on Premier deal

Pepsi is aiming to snatch the FA Premier League headline sponsorship from Bass Brewers brand Carling, when the beer brand’s deal expires at the end of next season.

Negotiations are likely to begin in the next few weeks, now that the TV rights contracts have been finalised.

The future of Carling’s Premiership contract has been thrown into doubt with Interbrew’s takeover of Bass, and the departure of sponsorship chief Mike Flynn, who spearheaded the football deal. He has quit to join an Internet start-up.

Pepsi is understood to be eyeing the Premiership deal as part of its aggressive attack on Coca-Cola’s “ownership” of football, although insiders expect the contract to cost up to &£60m over four years.

Carling first sponsored the league in 1993, when it paid &£13m, but by the time it renegotiated the contract in 1997, the price had trebled to &£39m.

Britvic Soft Drinks, which markets Pepsi in the UK, launched the brand’s first major football promotion three months ago, for which it signed top stars such as David Beckham, Michael Owen and Dwight York (MW March 2).

The brand, which is also part of Manchester United’s platinum sponsorship programme, recently funded a Channel 5 TV programme, called Inside Football (MW March 16).

A Britvic spokeswoman declined to comment on Pepsi’s plans.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and inspiration that will help you develop as a marketer and leader.

Register and receive the best content from the only title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work, so we can make Marketing Week more relevant to you.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team and columnists will ask the biggest questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we will be your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Dedicated to developing your skills and helping you achieve marketing excellence. Find guidance on leadership, professional development and the latest industry jobs.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here