Rolex to watch over F1

Luxury Swiss watch brand Rolex has signed a deal with Formula One chiefs to become the motor racing tournament’s official timekeeper from next year.

F1 sponsorship deal part of luxury watchmaker’s plans to ramp up ties to global sports.

The brand says the agreement is the first phase of a strategic shift to focus its sponsorship activities on events chosen for their “strong symbolic value and global resonance”. The value of the deal have not been disclosed.

Rolex will give the time in different locations during each grand prix. The brand’s logo will also be positioned around race circuits.

The watchmaker has built strong ties to motor sport over the years and it is hoped the deal will appeal to younger fans of the event. Former Formula One champion Sir Jackie Stewart has been a Rolex brand ambassador for 40 years and the company has also had previous deals with American race the Daytona International Speedway.

Bernie Eccleston, chief executive of Formula One, says the brand’s “prestige and “long-standing commitment” to motor sport give it “true credibility”.

Rolex also has a prominent presence in a number of major sporting arenas such as the Wimbledon tennis tournament and The Open golf series.

The brand replaces rival watchmaker Hublot, which was appointed official watchmaker in 2010. It famously ran an ad featuring a picture of Ecclestone sporting a black-eye after he had his watch stolen in 2010.

South Korean electronics brand LG have had their branding appear on timekeeping systems in recent seasons.

The deal is the latest commercial announcement to come from the sport, that has seen both Coca-Cola and Infiniti pen long-term deals with teams to exploit the reach of the sport.

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