Sponsor Coca-Cola says FIFA World Cup ideals have been ‘tarnished;’ Budweiser says it expects ‘strong ethical standards’

Coca-Cola and Budweiser speak out in response to FIFA corruption scandal

By Rachel Arthur contact

- Last updated on GMT

Coca-Cola and Budweiser speak out in response to FIFA corruption scandal

Related tags: World cup, Fifa world cup

Long-standing FIFA sponsors Coca-Cola and Budweiser have responded to the FIFA corruption scandal, with Coca-Cola concerned that the ideals of the event have been ‘tarnished.’

Budweiser, meanwhile, says it expects ‘strong ethical standards’ from the world football governing body, adding it is continuing to monitor the situation.

Coca-Cola’s concerns

Swiss police arrested seven FIFA officials on Wednesday in Zurich, as part of a US fraud inquiry that indicted 14 people.

Swiss authorities have also launched a criminal inquiry into the bidding process for the World Cup events in 2018 and 2022.

Coca-Cola is pressing FIFA to address issues raised by the corruption scandal surrounding the football governing body, while media reports speculate that major sponsors may reassess their connections.

Coca-Cola is one FIFA’s longest-standing corporate partners, having had a formal association since 1974 and official sponsorship of the World Cup since 1978. In 2005, the partnership was extended to 2022.

It is involved in events including World Cup, Women’s World Cup and Futsal World Cup, as well as sponsoring the FIFA / Coca-Cola World Ranking.

On Wednesday, Coca-Cola said the controversy had “tarnished the mission and ideals of the FIFA World Cup.”

“We have repeatedly expressed our concerns about these serious allegations,”​ it said in a statement. “We expect FIFA to continue to address these issues thoroughly. FIFA has stated that it is responding to all requests for information and we are confident it will continue to cooperate fully with the authorities.

Budweiser expects strong ethical standards

Budweiser has sponsored the FIFA World Cup since 1986 in Mexico. It was the official beer for Brazil 2014 with various promotions such as Budweiser Beer Gardens, its  #RiseAsOne creative campaign, and limited edition gold bottles featuring the World Cup trophy.  

Budweiser is a sponsor for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Parent company Anheuser-Busch InBev says has been communicating with FIFA and will continue to do so.

“We expect all of our partners to maintain strong ethical standards and operate with transparency,” ​said a statement from AB InBev.

“We continue to closely monitor the situation through our ongoing communications with FIFA.”

Other FIFA sponsors include Adidas, McDonald’s and Visa.

Visa – which is a top-tier FIFA partner with a partnership extended to 2022 - has described its disappointment and concern with the body as ‘profound.’ It says it expects ‘swift and immediate steps’ from FIFA.

Visa added that, if FIFA failed to make changes, it would reassess its sponsorship.

FIFA members are voting today on the presidency of the body. 

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2 comments

Money Talks

Posted by Al K,

FIFA is 'dirty', and if it doesn't clean up it act quickly, it's corporate partners/sponsors will be guilty by association. However, I have little hope that change will occur, unless Coca-Cola's, McDonalds', Visa's, InBev's , and Adidas' corporate counsels join forces and give FIFA a date certain to have a new governance plan in effect. FIFA will only act when they realize that the $$$ are about to be cut off.

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FIFA Corruption Charges

Posted by Roy Miranda,

This issue is serious and like all charges against a cooperate the Head of the organization must step down and wait until he is cleared. Right now he is hidden behind his position as the all mighty and everyone is reluctant to make waves with him, he cannot say he does not know anything if that's the case he was not running the organization just looking important with no say and getting a huge bonus and salary. Lets hear his total package and what is he worth truthfully including assets value and let the people decide when we hear what he is worth. How is it possible to be a near on Billionaire coming from his back ground? The big fish seem to slip through the net every time.

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