Jeep has signed a three-year, $45 million marketing deal with an Italian professional football club.
The agreement could help the brand make inroads in Europe, where SUVs are uncommon.
The Jeep logo will soon appear on the backs of the jerseys worn by the Italian soccer team Juventus. The team will also get Jeeps for club use.
Michigan Radio sports commentator John U. Bacon says it’s an aggressive marketing ploy that will almost certainly boost Jeep’s brand awareness in Europe.
"In most of Europe, it’s soccer and everything else -- it’s like hockey in Canada," says Bacon. "So this kind of exposure, it has to give Jeep a shot in the arm. This team’s visibility is as big as it gets. If the soccer team says it’s cool, it’s cool."
The new deal is part of Fiat and Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne’s push to make Jeep a global brand. That push will also help the company fulfill a requirement of the 2009 bankruptcy deal to boost Chrysler exports.