Johnnie Walker and Scottish Rugby are joining forces as it has become the official whisky partner of Scottish Rugby and the official whisky of the Scotland Rugby team.
Bringing together two great heritage brands with deep roots in Scottish culture, loved at home and around the world, the three year partnership was officially launched today (Tuesday 25 June) at BT Murrayfield by David Cutter, president of global supply and procurement at Diageo, and Dominic McKay, chief operating officer from Scottish Rugby.
As official whisky partner, Johnnie Walker will now be the whisky of choice at all Scotland matches at BT Murrayfield Stadium. As well as pop-up bars within the grounds, Johnnie Walker will also be creating bespoke brand experiences, giving home and away supporters a taste of Scotland on international match days.
Scottish Rugby and Johnnie Walker both have long and proud histories, with the Scottish Rugby Union formed in 1873 and Johnnie Walker preparing to celebrate its 200th anniversary in 2020. While celebrating great traditions, Scottish Rugby and Johnnie Walker also share a powerful commitment to breaking down boundaries and embracing change to inspire new generations of fans.
The iconic thistle logo on the shirt of every Scotland Rugby player as they step on to the pitch and the Striding Man on every bottle of Johnnie Walker exported around the world are instantly recognisable and in partnership they will help sell Scotland to new generations of global visitors to the country.
The Scottish Rugby partnership completes a strong roster of cultural associations for Johnnie Walker in Edinburgh as the brand prepares to open its global flagship visitor attraction in in the city’s Princes Street in 2020. It was recently announced as Official Whisky Partner of Edinburgh Fringe and the Edinburgh International Film Festival, and for the second-year running will play host to Edinburgh’s Hogmanay Street Party.
David Cutter said: ‘Johnnie Walker and Scottish Rugby have so much in common that this is a natural partnership for both our organisations.
‘We share long histories and deep roots in Scottish culture, but we are not prepared settle for that. Johnnie Walker is about progress, about challenging tradition, breaking new ground and find new audiences for our whisky. Scottish Rugby is doing the same for rugby, opening the sport up to diverse new generations of players and fans.
‘Johnnie Walker is made by a great team of people here in Scotland, with unrivalled craft and passion for what they do, which parallels the great skill and determination of Scotland’s rugby community. This partnership will celebrate those shared values and work to inspire new rugby and whisky fans alike.’
Dominic McKay added: ‘Johnnie Walker is a very exciting new addition to our partner family and one that continues to deepen our relationship with Diageo even further. The agreement will see two like-minded brands in Scottish Rugby and Johnnie Walker working together to promote the very best of Scotland, at home and abroad.
‘We work extremely hard to ensure our fans on a matchday at BT Murrayfield have an amazing day and by joining up with Johnnie Walker we can offer a new and distinctly Scottish brand to supporters.
‘In recent years we have taken a global approach to promoting Scottish Rugby in Asia, United States and across Europe and in doing so can provide a great platform for our partners to share in our experiences beyond our shores. We are therefore delighted to have the world’s most popular Scotch in Johnnie Walker alongside us when our national team are representing their country and it is another example of an international blue-chip brand seeing positive opportunities to engage with the wider public through our sport and Scottish Rugby.’