Rumour: McLaren set to announce Samsung
General paddock consensus is that McLaren will announce Samsung at their car launch in January. The announcement was due to go ahead on December 2nd, however the team thought it may be able to generate better publicity fore the brand at the launch.
It follows the announcement by Vodafone at the beginning of the year that they would be withdrawing from the sport. That deal for the title sponsorship and branding on the cars, driver overall and other team merchandise was said to be in the region of $50m per year.
Samsung pulled out of sponsoring the British Superbike team Honda Racing earlier this month which has added fuel to the rumours.
The other leading contender is Procter & Gamble using their Gillette brand. Gillette starting its partnership with Mclaren earlier in 2013 at the Chinese Grand Prix. The companies main focus was on expanding into the Asian market.
Many insiders have said that this deal will be key for Formula One marketing as it will be able to tell where the sport stands after the global financial crisis.
F1 will be considered in ‘good health’ should McLaren’s new sponsor yield a similar return to the partnership with Vodafone. Should the deal fail to impress or impact, then it may well raise some concerns for the sports financial health.
Either way it looks like the future is blue for McLaren.