India-based Apollo Tyres strikes a deal with one of Europe’s most favourite football clubs to promote the brand in 69 countries across the world.
Apollo Tyres in association with Manchster United will set up eco-friendly football pitches by using 100% recycled rubber from its own tyres to engage with the communities in the grass-root level. The pitches titled ‘Go the Distance’ are manufactured at Green Fields in the Netherlands. The first Apollo-Man United Go the Distance community pitch was opened near the North Stand of Old Trafford stadium. More pitches will soon be available across the world including the cricket-crazy India.
“The pitch will be available for the local community to test out and hone their football skills,” said Jonathan Rigby, Head of Marketing of the Club.
“The pitch has been specifically designed around three key challenges incorporating control, agility and accuracy, key performance aspects of Apollo Tyres’ products,” said Marco Paracciani, Chief Marketing Officer, Apollo Tyres Ltd.
“All of us at Apollo Tyres are hugely proud of this initiative and it is only apt that we are launching our first state-of-the-art pitch at no other place but the Theatre of Dreams,” he added. “Sustainability is a key element of our philosophy and we have found an innovative way to use recycled rubber while at the same time making a long-term investment for the benefit of the local community. In our role as sponsor of Manchester United, we want to support the local community and the construction of our first ‘Go the Distance’ pitch is proof of our commitment.”
The company has in fact used roughly 10 tonnes of recycled rubber, an equivalent of 2200 tyres, for the community pitch at Old Trafford.
The initiative is in line with Manchester United’s objective of encouraging young talent. The club has a long-standing tradition of youth investment and development and Apollo Tyres hopes that the pitches can also act as a springboard for another wave of talented young players from the local communities.
Apollo Tyres Ltd is a high-performance company and the leading Indian tyre manufacturer. It is built around the core principles of creating stakeholder value through reliability in its products and dependability in its relationships. The company has four manufacturing units in India, three in Southern Africa and one in the Netherlands. Apollo’s subsidiary companies are Apollo Durban Pty Ltd in South Africa and Apollo Vredestein BV in the Netherlands. India, South Africa and Europe are the company’s three domestic markets from where products are exported to over 100 countries. In each of the domestic markets the company operates through a vast network of branded, exclusive and multi-product outlets.
Apollo Tyres is currently pursuing a strong growth strategy in Europe and internationally through manufacturing expansion, the acquisition of Netherlands-based high-performance tyre brand Vredestein, and sponsorship of Manchester United. Apollo grew 17% in the last 12 months in the replacement market in Europe—against an average market growth of only 5 %. While they are new to Europe, their average marketshare in the region is around 3 %, including a 6 % market share in the largest market in Europe, Germany.
Manchester United is the third-richest football club in the world for 2011–12 in terms of revenue, with an annual revenue of €395.9 million, and the world’s second most valuable sports team in 2013, valued at $3.165 billion. It is one of the most widely supported football teams in the world.