Cologne, Germany – ŠKODA is extending its sponsorship engagement of the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship by another four years from 2018 until 2021. In 2012, ŠKODA was first recognised as the longest main sponsor of a world championship. This year, the Guinness World Records was renewed for the 25 year commitment with the IIHF. The sponsorship extension was sealed by Infront Sports & Media, a Wanda Sports company, as the exclusive media and marketing partner of the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) for the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship.
Since 1992, first as Official Car Sponsor and since 1993 as Official Main Sponsor, ŠKODA has remained committed to the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship. For over a quarter of a century, ŠKODA's activation has evolved from primarily a media-targeted strategy to sponsorship activation at its most advanced.
Bernhard Maier, CEO of ŠKODA: “Ice hockey fits perfectly with ŠKODA. Our commitment to this fascinating sport has played a key role in our sponsorship strategy since the beginning of our success story in the 1990s. The sponsorship engagement has made a significant contribution to strengthening the image and reputation of ŠKODA internationally. ŠKODA will continue its growth in the coming years – especially on the international market. As such, it is only logical that we sponsor one of the world's most well-known annual sports events for the long term.”
René Fasel, IIHF President: “ŠKODA has always been a very reliable partner, providing solutions to the transport challenges that such a large operation as the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship has. The ŠKODA car has become an icon of the tournament, something that you can associate with the event either with the cars on display in the arena or when they are driving around the host city.”
Bruno Marty, Executive Director Winter Sports at Infront: “ŠKODA's long-standing and continuous sponsorship involvement in the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship has not only meant the brand has become synonymous with ice hockey but that it has shaped ŠKODA's corporate identity as well. Infront has accompanied this historic partnership over the years and is proud to have played its part in the ever-increasing popularity of the ice hockey flagship event.”
This year's IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship, which is being held from 5 to 21 May in Cologne (Germany) and Paris (France), has been a perfect occasion for celebration for ŠKODA, Infront and the IIHF - looking back at a successful cooperation spanning a quarter of a century and looking ahead to a promising future.
Infront Sports & Media, a Wanda Sports company, is one of the most respected sports marketing companies in the world, managing a comprehensive portfolio of top properties. Led by President & CEO Philippe Blatter, Infront covers all aspects of successful sporting events – including distribution of media rights, sponsorship, media production, event operation and digital solutions – and has won a reputation for its high standards of delivery. As the number one player in winter sport and with a leading role in football, summer and endurance sports, Infront enjoys long-lasting partnerships with close to 170 rights-holders and hundreds of sponsors and media companies. Headquartered in Zug, Switzerland, Infront has a team of more than 900 experienced staff working from over 35 offices across more than 15 countries, delivering 4,100 event days of top class sport around the world every year. In November 2015, Infront was integrated into Wanda Sports Holding, part of the Chinese conglomerate the Dalian Wanda Group.
Wanda Sports is the world’s leading sports business entity, founded to capture the opportunities in the global sports industry and to contribute to the prosperous international sports landscape in three key areas: 1) Spectator Sports (media & marketing business), 2) Participation Sports (active lifestyle business), 3) Services (digital, production and service business). Led by President & Vice Chairman Philippe Blatter, Wanda Sports incorporates the international sports marketing company Infront Sports & Media, the iconic endurance brand IRONMAN and Wanda Sports China. The headquarters are in Guangzhou, China.