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SPONSORSHIP NEWS: Construction giant Caterpillar scores mammoth rugby sponsorship deal with Tigers

 The sponsorship deal is worth
a reported £6 million
Construction giant Caterpillar has agreed a sponsorship deal with rugby union club Leicester Tigers worth a reported £6 million, in what is believed to be the biggest rugby club sponsorship deal in history.

The five-year tie-up means that Caterpillar branding will feature across the Leicester Tigers' playing kit and in prominent ad display sites throughout its stadium. Caterpillar will also have the naming rights to the North Stand and the members' lounge.

Richard Cooper, European MD of building construction products for Caterpillar, says, "Our heritage in the Leicester area makes this sponsorship an ideal platform to further support our business and community objectives. Rugby is a global sport enjoyed by Caterpillar customers, enterprise partners, employees and their families around the world. This agreement provides us with a fantastic environment to strengthen existing relationships as well as building new ones."

Peter Wheeler, chief executive of Leicester Tigers, adds, "We are delighted to be entering into this partnership with Caterpillar. We hope the sponsorship will mark the beginning of a partnership which sees both companies working towards strengthening their positions in the UK and Europe."

Wheeler continues, "We have had a relationship with Caterpillar for a number of years and are aware of their reputation and standing. We are looking forward to this significant enhancement of our relationship, which we believe will set new standards in regard to partnerships between professional sports clubs and commercial sponsors."

Caterpillar will replace the club's former sponsor, stone products manufacturer Bradstone. The new sponsorship deal will take effect from the beginning of the 2008-09 rugby union season which kicks off in September.

Leicester Tigers have won the English championship five times in the last decade.

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