At a glance: deals and moves in the Irish sponsorship market and beyond for the month of MARCH

March brought to a close what has been a busy and dynamic first quarter for the Irish sponsorship market.

 Heineken and World Rugby have extended their long standing partnership, as the beer brand has renewed as a worldwide partner for the Rugby World Cup 2019 in Japan. The deal will extend Heineken’s association with rugby’s showcase event to 24 years. Also, Heineken will become an official partner of the Women’s Rugby World Cup 2017 which is being held in Dublin and Belfast in August this year.

 Tesco announced its sponsorship of Today FM’s mid-morning show Dermot & Dave for the next year at an undisclosed sum. The deal sees Tesco integrated into the show through taglines, outside broadcasts, on-air and social media promotions. As part of a station reshuffle, the show recently moved from its lunchtime slot to mid-morning with comedian Al Porter joining the station and broadcasting from 12 – 2.30pm

ToughestMeanwhile March featured the latest instalment of AIB’s popular TV Series ‘The Toughest Trade’ which was broadcast on RTÉ2 on March 1st and 10th and once again plucked GAA stars from around the country and placed them in a variety of professional sports teams. In this series Donegal footballer Michael Murphy joined rugby side Clermont Auvergne while the Welsh rugby wizard sampled life as an amateur player with Murphy’s club Glenswilly. In the second episode Wexford hurler Lee Chin travelled to Canada to train with the NHL team; the Vancouver Canucks. Meanwhile former Canucks star Alex Auld travelled to Wexford to try his hand at hurling with Chin’s Faythe Harries team. The series drew audiences of 155,770 & 149,490 adults across the two episodes .

Activity within the car category continues to intensify as SEAT Ireland announced its sponsorship of Eastenders on RTÉ. The sponsorship of the ever popular soap will last for 12 months. The deal comprises of idents on television on all episodes across the 12 month sponsorship.  The soap which has been broadcast on RTÉ One since March 2001 continues to be hugely popular with over 1 million viewers tuning in every week.

VodafoneVodafone Ireland has become the title sponsor for Your Business Live, a new event aimed at Irish SME’s which has been set up by Independent News & Media (INM). Entrepreneur and Sunday Independent columnist Sean Gallagher has been named as the event director. The two-day event will gather together executives, decision-makers, entrepreneurs, owners and managers from around the country to network, learn and do business. The event will take place on October 17th and 18th in the RDS in Dublin.



In an interesting development Virgin Media Solutions has struck a deal with digital technology company Mirriad to enable brands access non-live programme content after it has been produced, via digital product placement. Virgin Media was the first brand to use this technology by enabling its current advertising campaign to appear in TV3’s drama ‘Red Rock’ through digital brand placement. Despite the episodes being shot a number of weeks prior, viewers of ‘Red Rock’ will see real-time Virgin Media outdoor advertising appear throughout scenes in the series.

Racing in Kildare received a major shot in the arm. Due to an increased investment from Tattersalls, the Tattersalls Gold Cup will be worth €300,000 in total prize money when the Group One contest is staged at The Curragh Racecourse on Sunday May 28th. This represents a 20% increase on the 2016 prize money which was €250,000. Meanwhile at Naas Racecourse, Ladbrokes Exchange has been announced as the new sponsor of the €100,000 Leinster National, the richest ever steeplechase to be run at the track.


Protein and vitamin bar Fulfil has signed up as the official snack sponsor of the FAI for the next three years. The partnership includes the snack brand investing in a passing skills machine used by teams such as Barcelona, Liverpool and Manchester United. Ireland players will use the machine for commercial activities, while the FAI will loan it out to Airtricity League of Ireland clubs. It will also be used on match days in the Aviva and will feature on social media with videos released on

QuestThe Adventure Race promoters, Quest Adventure Series have signed multiple Olympic medallists Alistair and Jonny Brownlee to become ambassadors for their growing range of races around the world. Quest Adventure Series hosts races throughout Ireland including Killarney, Glendalough and Achill as well as in England, Wales, Scotland and Austria.

Allergan plc, the global pharmaceutical company has been announced as an Official Sponsor of the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open, hosted by the Rory Foundation. The deal is for three years and is part of the company’s celebration of 40 years of business in Ireland. The Dubai Duty Free Irish Open, takes place this year at Portstewart Golf Club from July 6-9 and is part of the European Tour’s prestigious Rolex Series – with the prize fund increased by almost 75% to $7 million.

As ever, we finish with some available opportunities in the Irish market.

RTÉ is seeking a sponsor for the Marian Finucane Show, which airs from 11am-1pm on Saturdays & Sundays on RTÉ Radio 1.  The show features Marian’s unique take on the major issues each week, as well as interviews and panel discussions, and is on the market for €265,000 for 12 months.

Also on the market from RTÉ is Weekend Sport on RTÉ Radio 1, the most listened to sports show on national radio. Presenters Des Cahill, Joanne Cantwell, Jacqui Hurley, Darren Frehill and John Murray showcase all the weekend’s major sporting action, as well as reaction, analysis and interviews. The show, which airs from 2pm-6pm on Saturdays and Sundays, is available for €260,000 for 12 months.

Finally, Red Nova are seeking a sponsor for the Neil Prendeville Show which airs daily from 9am-12pm on Cork’s Red FM. The show examines the serious issue of the day, mixing tough questions with life’s lighter moments and is on the market at a cost of €10,000 per month.