ATLANTA–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The Coca-Cola Company, United States Soccer Federation and Major League Soccer (MLS) today announced a new, multi-year partnership agreement to help bring soccer to new heights in the United States. The deal also includes a renewal of the Company’s standing partnership with the Mexican National Team’s U.S. Tour. The Coca-Cola Company will be the official beverage partner across the non-alcoholic beverage category for U.S. Soccer and the Mexican National Team’s U.S. Tour. The exclusive association with MLS will include the carbonated beverage and water categories.
With the popularity of soccer continuing to grow, Coca-Cola is taking the next big step to show their commitment to the sport – a major passion point for people across the country. “Coca-Cola and the beautiful game have always been associated with each other- whether at a global or local level. With this new partnership, we are committed to growing soccer here in the U.S. and using the power of our brands to engage and refresh fans at every level of the sport,” said Ivan Pollard, Senior Vice President Investment, Connections and Assets, Coca-Cola North America.
Coca-Cola has been a global partner of the FIFA World Cup since 1974. Passion for the sport was at an all-time high during the 2014 FIFA World Cup, and was celebrated by the Company with its largest-ever global soccer campaign, “The World’s Cup,” which focused on inclusivity. The FIFA World Cup Trophy Tour presented by Coca-Cola visited 89 countries across the globe in 2014, including four stops in the United States. To help celebrate the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada, Coca-Cola kicked off the Women’s World Cup Trophy Tour on April 1, bringing the coveted Trophy to 12 Canadian cities over two months.
At a grassroots level, the Company brings the values of soccer and active living to life through annual soccer programs such as the Copa Coca-Cola soccer tournament, POWERADE Sueño Alianza talent search and Club Balón Rojo, a ball-kids program in partnership with local Boys & Girls Clubs.
Coca-Cola has been a proud supporter and partner of the Mexican National Team for more than 30 years in Mexico and 12 years as part of the Mexican National Team’s annual U.S. Tour.
The Mexican National Team will face the U.S. Men’s National Team in one of the biggest matchups of the year in front of a sold-out crowd at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas on April 15.
“We are very excited to partner with iconic brands like Coca-Cola and POWERADE,” said U.S. Soccer CEO Dan Flynn. “U.S. Soccer will benefit greatly from the marketing efforts of these brands and their incredible commitment to elevating the sport of soccer. As our official sponsor, we’re looking forward to the support and product they will be providing to our Men’s, Women’s and Youth National Teams, as well as teams in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy, in the coming years.”
Soccer United Marketing facilitated the agreement.
“The sport of soccer is on the rise like never before, and adding Coca-Cola as a key strategic partner speaks to the continued progress we are making to become a dominant Soccer Nation,” said Kathy Carter, President of Soccer United Marketing. “The U.S. Men’s National Team captured the attention of the country last summer, the U.S. Women’s National Team is heading into this summer’s Women’s World Cup in Canada, MLS is celebrating its 20th season with new clubs and new stars and the Mexican National Team’s U.S. Tour regularly sells out venues across the country. There has never been a more promising time for soccer in this country and we look forward to partnering with Coca-Cola for many years to come.”
About The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world’s largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Led by Coca-Cola, one of the world’s most valuable and recognizable brands, our Company’s portfolio features 20 billion-dollar brands including, Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, POWERADE, Minute Maid, Simply, Georgia, Dasani, FUZE TEA and Del Valle. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, ready-to-drink coffees, and juices and juice drinks. Through the world’s largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy our beverages at a rate of 1.9 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. Together with our bottling partners, we rank among the world’s top 10 private employers with more than 700,000 system associates. For more information, visit Coca-Cola Journey at www.coca-colacompany.com, follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/CocaColaCo, visit our blog, Coca-Cola Unbottled, at www.coca-colablog.com or find us on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/the-coca-cola-company.
About U.S. Soccer Federation
Founded in 1913, U.S. Soccer is the non-for-profit, governing body of soccer in the United States and has helped chart the course for the game for more than 100 years. During this time, the Federation’s mission statement has been clear and simple: to make soccer, in all its forms, a pre-eminent sport in the United States and to continue the development of soccer at all recreational and competitive levels. To that end, the sport’s development and growth in the United States during the past 25 years has been nothing short of remarkable as U.S. Soccer’s National Teams have continually succeeded on the world stage and, with the assistance of its members, the fan support and participation in the game continues to reach new heights. For more information, visit ussoccer.com.
About Soccer United Marketing
Founded in 2002, Soccer United Marketing (SUM) is the preeminent soccer business company in North America. SUM holds the exclusive rights to the most important soccer properties in the region, including: all commercial rights to Major League Soccer; the United States Soccer Federation; promotional and marketing rights to Mexican National Team games played in the United States, and the CONCACAF Gold Cup™.
In 2009, SUM announced the creation of the MLS Digital Properties, the only soccer advertising network of its kind, covering all facets of the sport in the U.S., and which allows advertisers to reach millions of soccer fans via online advertising and sponsorships campaigns. These global properties are represented by SUM’s slogan: One Sport. One Company.™ For more information, please visit www.SUMworld.com.