CONCORD, N.C. – official release — HHP/Alan Marler photo — 3M will join 11-time Sprint Cup Series champions Hendrick Motorsports beginning with the 2015 NASCAR season, when it will become a primary sponsor of driver Jeff Gordon and his No. 24 Chevrolet SS team.
The new relationship will feature 3M as a primary sponsor in 11 Sprint Cup races annually and as an associate-level partner in all other events. The agreement covers the 2015, 2016 and 2017 NASCAR seasons.
All five of 3M’s business units, which comprise more than $31 billion in annual sales, will use the sponsorship in consumer promotions, product launches and business-to-business opportunities.
“At 3M, we play to win, and we push hard every day to do just that,” said Jesse Singh, senior vice president, 3M Global Sales and Marketing. “With this deal, we align with champion driver Jeff Gordon and an organization at the top of its game in Hendrick Motorsports. What they do in the garage and on the track exemplifies what we’re all about in our labs, plants and business teams around the world.”
With more than 65 of its products used in the construction and maintenance of Sprint Cup Series race cars, 3M for decades has played a key role in the success of NASCAR teams. The company manufactures more than 80,000 different products and has been an official NASCAR partner across several categories since 1995.
The company has sponsored Roush Fenway Racing driver Greg Biffle since 2007.
“The range of 3M’s business is just incredible,” said Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports. “It’s an amazingly diverse company that spends billions in research and development to continue rolling out new and innovative products. We’re already using many of them throughout the organization, and when you consider the potential for both consumer and business-to-business programs connected to our sport, the possibilities are endless.”
3M joins Drive To End Hunger, which is going from 23 events this year as a primary to 13 in 2015, as well as Axalta (10 races), Pepsi (two races) and Panasonic (two races) for the four-time Cup champion. The 3M sponsorship with Roush Fenway was for a full season of 36 races and two non-points events but will move to a partial schedule with the driver who has 90 career victories and currently sits second in the 2014 standings.
One of the most accomplished drivers in NASCAR history, Gordon is a four-time Cup Series champion, and his 90 victories rank third on the all-time wins list. Currently second in points, he has two victories, one pole position, seven top-five finishes and 15 top-10s in 22 Sprint Cup races this season.
“Innovation is what 3M is known for,” said Gordon, 43, who has a lifetime contract with Hendrick Motorsports. “We’ve seen that approach throughout their involvement in NASCAR, and it’s a terrific fit for what we do at Hendrick Motorsports and with the No. 24 team. I’m personally excited about the opportunities and thrilled to represent a company that’s so passionately supported auto racing for such a long time.”
The 3M decision leaves Roush Fenway searching for sponsorship for Biffle, who recently signed a multiyear extension to remain with the team.
“We’re thankful for the 10-year relationship we’ve enjoyed with 3M that included some of Roush Fenway’s most memorable victories,” Roush Fenway President Steve Newmark said in a statement. “We have some exciting ’15 partnership announcements for the No. 16 coming up in the next few weeks and look forward to sharing those soon.”