By Barry Janoff
June 17, 2014: Panasonic, which has partnered with Nascar's Hendrick Motorsports since 2007, has signed a new deal that expands and extends the alliance.
The multi-year pact includes Panasonic's first on-car branding with Hendrick, with the company becoming the primary sponsor of Jeff Gordon's No. 24 team in two Sprint Cup races annually and as an associate-level partner in all other events.
The deal covers the 2014, 2015 and 2016 Nascar seasons. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Hendrick Motorsports said that Gordon’s No. 24 Panasonic Chevrolet SS will debut this weekend at California’s Sonoma Raceway, with Panasonic’s Toughbook featured on the car’s quarter panels.
Panasonic will also be Gordon's primary sponsor Aug. 31 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Panasonic said it would "leverage the partnership to promote technology solutions and products for business.
“Hendrick Motorsports and Jeff Gordon have a record of excellence that is a perfect fit for Panasonic and its Toughbook brand," Rance Poehler, president, Panasonic System Communications Company of North America, said in a statement. "We've been a technology partner of Hendrick Motorsports for many years, and as our business evolves to solutions and deeper partnerships with our customers, it is an excellent time to extend our relationship from behind the scenes to the car on the track.”
Hendrick Motorsports currently uses Panasonic technology throughout its Concord facility, including cameras, electronic displays, televisions, digital signage, Toughbook computers and projection units. The team also uses Panasonic’s professional video products to support its in-house video production capabilities.
“Panasonic has a combination of world-class people and products,” Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports,. said in a statement. “We use their technology across the organization, and it provides the best possible tools in every area, from competition to marketing to IT. To have them see more opportunities for their business and want to grow the relationship sends a very positive message.”
“Hendrick Motorsports and Jeff Gordon have a record of excellence that is a perfect fit for Panasonic and its Toughbook brand."
Gordon, a four-time Nascar Sprint Cup Series champion, is the current points leader heading into this weekend's race in Sonoma.
Hendrick Motorsports also features top drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson and Kasey Kahne.
According to Gordon, “We’re looking forward to working with Panasonic in a new way, and I can’t think of a better place for their debut with the No. 24 team. This is the next step in what’s already been a successful partnership, and it’s going to be fun to take it to another level. We hope to kick it off with a win this weekend for Panasonic and Toughbook.”