Renault Sport Formula One Team has announced Alibaba’s Tmall as a partner for the 2018 FIA Formula One World Championship.
The deal will see the logo of the Chinese B2C online retail portal being displayed prominently on the Renault R.S. 18 F1 challenger from next month when 2018 F1 season kicks-off in Melbourne, Australia next month.
China, a strategic market for Groupe Renault, is the top priority in the company’s new mid-term plan, “Drive the Future,” the French brand’s motorsport division has stated in a Press release.
The Chinese joint venture, Dongfeng Renault Automotive Company, has set a target of 400,000 passenger cars sales by 2022 based on nine local models.
Cyril Abiteboul, managing director of Renault Sport Racing said, “One of the key objectives of returning to Formula 1 was to leverage its global platform for Groupe Renault. China has been identified as a market of strategic importance and partnering with high-profile companies like Alibaba’s Tmall will provide opportunities to significantly improve Renault brand awareness and opinion in China, with a strong presence over the Chinese Grand Prix in April, but also throughout the year.”
Wei Yu, General Manager of Tmall Auto added further, “We are excited to partner with the Renault Sport Formula One Team to make our activity around the Chinese Grand Prix a success and to be working closely together to bring one-of-a-kind experiences with the Renault Sport Formula One Team to our customers.”
Tmall, launched in 2008, caters to consumers looking for branded products and a premium shopping experience. A large number of international and Chinese brands and retailers have established storefronts on Tmall. According to iResearch, Tmall was China’s largest third-party platform for brands and retailers in terms of gross merchandise value in 2016.
The news follows the signing of BP Castrol by Renault Sport as a partner in a multi-year deal during the firast week of February. Renault Sport, during the same period, has also partnered with France’s top performing esports team -Team Vitality to form Renault Sport Team Vitality in a bid to enter the lucrative and expanding global esports arena.