Kingfisher eyes UK growth with grassroots cricket sponsorship deal

Kingfisher, India’s biggest beer by market share, is hoping its sponsorship of English amateur cricket will give it a firmer foothold in the UK and unseat rival Cobra Beer.

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The Indian brand, is using its sponsorship of the England & Wales Cricket Board’s ‘Kingfisher Beer Cup’, the nation’s top amateur cricket league, as part of a fundraising initiative to drive money back into grassroots cricket.

The scheme will be spearheaded by the launch of the ‘Kingfisher Quiz and Curry Night’ next month, which invites amateur cricket clubs to host their own quiz nights.

Clubs who register online for the event are sent an interactive quiz DVD as well instructions on how to organise and promote the fundraiser.

It is part of Kingfisher’s bid raise its profile outside of the Indian restaurant sector by bolstering its ties to “aspirational sports”, particularly cricket and Formula 1.

Laura Mitchell marketing manager at Kingfisher says: “This isn’t just another campaign for us, the idea is that we grow this into something bigger over the next few years. While cricket is our core platform, the model we’ve developed is something that could be transferable to other sports and amateur clubs.”
England international cricketer, Graeme Swann, will front the campaign in the UK for the next two years.

In December the ECB announced that National Club Championship was being renamed the Kingfisher Beer Cup after the Indian brand signed a three-year sponsorship deal.

Shekhar Ramamurthy, deputy president of Kingfisher owner, Unite Breweries, says while the brand has an established international presence in cricket, his ambition is to extend its links by investing in the recreational game.

“All the marketing activity we’re doing may look a little disparate but when you put them together the objective is to make the brand in all the markets it operates in, particularly the UK, be seen as an Indian brand with a cool international image.”



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