Carlsberg, The Danish beer, has become the first official sponsor of football's European Championships in Portugal 2004 and has also secured the rights for the competition in 2008.

The company hopes to build on the success of Euro 2000, where in the UK alone, Carlsberg's sales increased by 48% during the tournament. The sales of the brand in the take-home sector rose by 307%, with multiple grocers delivering 773% increase for the Carlsberg brand.

“Euro 2000 was a real catalyst for growth and the Carlsberg brand has gone from strength to strength, outperforming the other leading players over the past 12 months” explained Doug Clydesdale, managing director brands & sales. “The new deal backed by an integrated marketing programme will ensure real excitement for our customers and extends our commitment to high profile sponsorships.”

Lennart Johannsson, president UEFA, added, “The European Championships is one of the biggest events in sport. By partnering with one of the biggest brands in beer, you can guarantee success.”

Carlsberg will become the ‘Official Beer to Euro 2004 and 2008'. The core rights package will include perimeter signage across 31 matches, sole and exclusive display rights and broadcast sponsorship coupled with commercial airtime. Added to this, will be the opportunity to develop premium products, Internet rights through official sites and on-site branding and activity throughout the tournament.