Daimler decided a few years back that it wanted to push its products in the golf world. So since 2008, one of its brands, Mercedes-Benz, has sponsored three of the sport’s major events, including the one that's now underway, the British Open, where it's a prominent luxury brand along with the likes of Rolex.
Now, Merdedes “has its sights” on the fourth one of those, the U.S. Open, once the deal Lexus has with that event is finished in 2015, according to the New York Times.
BMW sponsors the PGA European tour and a few golf events, the paper notes, and “continues to outspend Mercedes in golf.”
The difference between the two companies, though, is that BMW sponsors a few different sports, while Mercedes is moving away from tennis and targeting its efforts on golf and auto racing, the Times points out.
“Thanks to players like Rickie Fowler, golf is no longer as staid as it used to be,” said Lüder Fromm, director of global marketing communications for Mercedes-Benz, the Times reports. Fowler, in case you don’t know, is a 22-year-old American player who has gained attention for wearing bright orange outfits and having made a music video. “There will be a sort of new energy coming with these younger pro players.”
Now that the Tiger Woods brand is fading, golf is looking to find such younger names as Fowler and 22-year-old Rory McIlroy, who recently won the U.S. Open to market.
“Golf is always in danger of being a stale old person’s sport,” Danny Townsend, president for Europe and South Asia for Repucom, a brand analysis firm, told the Times. “[These young players] are definitely bucking that trend.”