Diageo North America Named Austin FC Founding Partner in Groundbreaking Spirits Sponsorships Deal
Captain Morgan to Headline Agreement as an Official Partner of Austin FC and Naming Rights Partner of the Captain Morgan Club; Captain Morgan Club to Provide First-Class Hospitality Experience at Q2 Stadium
Austin FC announced today that it has entered into a multiyear sponsorship agreement with Diageo North America, a leader in beverage alcohol with an outstanding collection of some of the industry’s most iconic brands. Diageo North America made its first significant investment in Major League Soccer in 2019 when it entered into a deal that established Captain Morgan as the league’s exclusive spirits partner. This multi-year partnership with Austin FC marks a reinforcement of the brand’s commitment to not only the game of soccer in the United States, but also to the city of Austin and the dedicated fans who have waited years for this historic inaugural season.
The groundbreaking founding sponsorship agreement establishes Captain Morgan as an Official Partner of Austin FC and grants Captain Morgan entitlement rights to the Q2 Stadium East Club hospitality area, which now becomes The Captain Morgan Club. The brand-new, state-of-the-art bar and club will provide East Club members with an exclusive, top-flight food and beverage experience during Austin FC home matches and events hosted at Q2 Stadium.
“We know that Austinites have a fondness for indoor-outdoor gathering spaces, and we are proud to introduce The Captain Morgan Club as the official name for the East Club hospitality area at the stadium, which will offer an indoor-outdoor gathering space that is unique to MLS stadiums for members and non-members alike,” said Andy Loughnane, President of Austin FC. “We look forward to opening the doors of the Captain Morgan Club and providing fans with an unforgettable experience for many matchdays to come.”
The signature indoor-outdoor design of the Captain Morgan Club will produce one of the most distinctive hospitality destinations within sports and entertainment. The unique functionality of the Captain Morgan Club on Austin FC matchdays establishes a flexible service model that begins with exclusive access to members prior to and during the match before opening to all ticketed guests after the match concludes.
“Since Diageo and Captain Morgan signed its first official partnership with Major League Soccer in summer 2019, we have witnessed the sustained expansion of the league and continue to be excited by the sports ultra-passionate fanbase. It’s just a great time for the growth of the sport here in the U.S.,” said Ed Pilkington, Chief Marketing and Innovation Officer for Diageo North America. “Matching that fan passion with a city like Austin, TX; rich with personality and culture is a great cocktail! We can’t wait to put down our roots and witness that passion in Austin’s first major professional sports team. All of us at Diageo look forward to working with Austin FC to show the club’s supporters and the city that Diageo and Captain Morgan is committed to providing them with the top-tier gameday experience they deserve.”
Excel Sports Management’s properties division, the go-to-solution for commercial strategy development and the sale of marquee partnership assets such as stadium naming rights and on-uniform branding, assisted Austin FC management in the sourcing and finalization of the Diageo North America agreement.
Additionally, as the exclusive spirits partner of Q2 Stadium, Diageo North America will work closely in tandem with Captain Morgan and Austin FC throughout the duration of the partnership on a range of programming that will include community and consumer activities across Austin and Central Texas.