According to Fox News, Mars Inc., which is the maker of the NASCAR racer’s sponsor, M&M’s is officially pulling out of the sport. Busch revealed the unfortunate news in a social media post. “It’s hard to put into words the appreciation I have for the Mars family, their associates, and their brands that have supported me since 2008.”
The NASCAR driver also stated that on the track, he and M&M’s have won 55 races and two championships together. “But off the track, we’ve built friendships that will live way beyond 2022. The Mars family has always accepted me for who I am and I’ll always be thankful for that.”
In regards to what he hopes for the upcoming season the NASCAR champ added, “Here’s to many more trips to Victory Lane in 2022!”
Sports Business Journal revealed that Mars and M&M’s will spend the 2022 NASCAR season celebrating its time in the sport. This will include its long-running deal with Joe Gibbs Racing, which has delivered two Cup Series championships. The team deal was recently extended in 2019 through 2022 and was for 25-30 primaries annually on Busch’s No. 18 car. The deal at the time was valued at around $20 million annually.
Joe Gibbs Racing President, Dave Alpern, said that Mars informed the team this summer. Giving them well over a year to find a replacement, and the No. 18 car’s other major sponsor Interstate Batteries recently extended for multiple years.
NASCAR Team Joe Gibbs Racing Speaks Out About M&M’s Departure
While continuing to speak with Sports Business Journal, Joe Gibbs Racing President Dave Alpern stated he is confident the team will be a replacement for M&M’s upon the company’s departure from NASCAR.
“If you had told me in 2007, when we started talking to them for the 2008 season,” Alpern explains. “That they’ll be a 15-year primary sponsor and lead the most laps. And win the most races of any sponsor/driver combination for that time, we all would have taken it and run with it.”
Alpern also stated that the deal ending is not a reflection of the NASCAR sponsorship not delivering a proper return for Mars. But it is rather that the company from his understanding wants to try some new things. “And no matter how big a brand is, they have a finite budget. So when you want to try something new, it has to come from somewhere else.”
NASCAR Executive Vice President and CRO Daryl Wolf added that the sport and Mars have been working together for 30 years. “An extraordinary run that has provided both brands with incredible value and exposure.”