Crabbie's has been unveiled as the official ginger beer of Welsh rugby in a ground-breaking joint partnership that spans the game in Wales for the very first time.
The leading UK drinks brand has signed up to an innovative new five-way joint agreement with the Ospreys, Scarlets, Cardiff Blues, Newport Gwent Dragons and the Welsh Rugby Union which will see Crabbie’s drinks products appear in all five key rugby venues in Wales.
The innovative new agreement with Crabbie’s follows the first collaborative sponsorship between the four regional rugby businesses and their current headline sponsor BT which was announced in June 2014.
Mark Davies, Chief Executive of Pro Rugby Wales said: “Crabbie’s is a great product, a fun brand and a dynamic business, so we’re delighted to welcome them as a partner and supplier to professional rugby in Wales.
“Equally important to the Regions and WRU has been to work with Crabbie’s on a programme that can provide genuine benefits to the Community clubs that stock and sell Crabbie’s products, delivering added value across the game in Wales.”
Welsh Rugby Union chief executive Martyn Phillips said: “Working more closely with the regional game and collaborating in order to drive efficiency in sponsorship and all procurement has been a key aim for us over the past year and will continue to be so.
“This first deal of its kind with Crabbie’s is highly significant in that it shows the power and the draw of the game in Wales when we are all working in unison.
“Crabbie’s have been the first to see that and we thank them for their investment in our national game and look forward to striking more partnerships of this type in the future.”
The Crabbie’s partnership will see its range of alcoholic ginger beer appear on sale at the Liberty Stadium, Parc y Scarlets, BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park, Rodney Parade and Principality Stadium for PRO12, Wales’ internationals and Judgement Day fixtures. As well as pouring and supply rights, the Crabbie’s partnership with rugby in Wales will include digital marketing, brand experiential and sampling, tickets and hospitality rights and sponsor events.
The new partnership will also see community rugby clubs across Wales benefit from links with Crabbie’s new grassroots rugby initiative launched recently at www.crabbiesrugby.co.uk which enables clubs to earn rewards and receive a range of rugby training equipment including rugby balls, tackle pads and tackle bags.
Crabbie’s commitment to rugby across the UK has seen it establish partnerships across the UK game - including with the Scottish Rugby Union, Glasgow and Edinburgh rugby, as well as numerous English clubs from the Premiership down to grassroots level including being main sponsor of the National Rugby Awards for the past two years.
Capitalising on the growing profile of rugby alongside Welsh professional rugby’s global audience with multi-channel coverage, the sponsorship is set to widen awareness of the Crabbie’s brand in the UK and further afield.
John Bradbury, Managing Director Halewood Wines and Spirits said: “Crabbie’s is a passionate supporter of rugby at all levels and wants to help grow the game through our long-term involvement.
“Rugby is the people’s game in Wales, with clubs at the heart of their communities - this is the cornerstone of our partnership. By working together with the Welsh Rugby Union and Pro Rugby Wales, we want to see rugby in Wales kick on with more players involved across the country and more successful teams on the pitch.
“With so many high profile matches coming up this season at club and international level, it promises to be an exciting first year together for Crabbie’s and Welsh rugby.”
The Crabbie’s brand features a portfolio of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, made famous by its Ginger Beer and Ginger Wines, and expanded recently with the launch of refreshing flavour additions and further varieties to its range.