Beckham signs with Diageo to back Haig Club Scotch whisky.
Soccer icon David Beckham has partnered with beverage giant Diageo to promote the launch of a new Scotch whisky brand.
Together with his manager, Simon Fuller, will collaborate with Diageo on the worldwide launch of Haig Club Single Grain Scotch Whisky, playing a ‘fundamental role in developing the brand, its strategy and positioning’, according to a release.
The former England captain, will also lead the promotion of the responsible drinking programme for Haig Club.
Haig Club joins a roster of Beckham-backed brands which includes Jaguar, Sky, Breitling, Armani, Adidas, Samsung, Pepsi, Burger King, H&M, and Sainsbury’s. He also serves as a global ambassador for Chinese soccer as he follows a playing career which took in spells at Manchester United, Real Madrid, LA Galaxy, AC Milan and Paris Saint-Germain.
Beckham, 38, said: “The House of Haig has a rich history and I’m proud to be working at the heart of a home-grown brand which has built an incredible heritage over 400 years. Working closely with Diageo, we look forward to collaborating on Haig Club, valuing and treasuring the Haig traditions while reinventing this whisky for years to come.”
David Gates, Diageo’s global head of premium core spirits, added: “Whisky is experiencing a continued global renaissance and like many of the world’s most respected whisky experts, we believe this will be the year that grain whisky breaks into the mainstream and gains the recognition it deserves.
“Diageo has a proven track record in Scotch whisky innovation and we have applied this expertise through the House of Haig in liquid development and craftsmanship, creating a sophisticated new whisky in Haig Club.”
By associating with celebrities, drinks companies hope to widen the appeal of spirits categories, which traditionally have had a relatively narrow customer base.
Whiskey in particular is often seen as a drink for older men with little appeal for women or younger drinkers, but that perception is shifting as companies release new variants.
Grain whiskey—a variant of Scotch—is made from maize, wheat or rye, rather than malted barley, and is considered more palatable for first-time whiskey drinkers because of its milder taste.
Diageo said Haig Club would appeal to current Scotch drinkers, but also “those who have always wanted to try whisky.”