The campaign was given a spectacular official launch before Sunday’s home game against FC Twente. It was the first game in which Feyenoord played in their revamped home shirt sporting the Diergaarde Blijdorp logo. All other advertising for a.s.r. was changed to Diergaarde Blijdorp, too. That means the zoo’s logo will be seen on the boards around the main pitch at De Kuip and around the training pitch, as well as the logo boards used as a backdrop for interviews. a.s.r. is also making its hospitality lounge and business unit available to Blijdorp during the second half of the season.
Feyenoord commercial director Mark Koevermans described it as a wonderful initiative. ‘a.s.r. has been a fantastic partner to Feyenoord for 21 and a half years, a very loyal main sponsor,’ he said. ‘This is a fine and unique gesture by them. a.s.r. continues to fulfil its contract with Feyenoord completely, it’s just that they have now put another party in the limelight. That stems from their vision. They want to help people, companies and institutions.’
In consultation with Feyenoord, a.s.r. has opted to support Diergaarde Blijdorp. ‘Feyenoord is well disposed to Blijdorp,’ said Koevermans. ‘The zoo is a Rotterdam icon, like Feyenoord, Euromast and the Erasmus bridge, say. And Blijdorp could do with some extra backing, because they are experiencing a tough time at the moment. Their situation is comparable to the situation Feyenoord were in until a couple of years ago. We obviously hope that Blijdorp gets back on its feet in the coming years – just like Feyenoord.’
The Feyenoord supporters can also help Diergaarde Blijdorp over the next six months. The Feyenoord Fan Shops and the zoo’s souvenir shop are set to introduce a special line of merchandising and part of the proceeds will benefit Diergaarde Blijdorp.
a.s.r.’s goodwill gesture to Diergaarde Blijdorp is not linked to Feyenoord’s search for a new main sponsor. ‘The partnership with a.s.r. as main sponsor ends on 1 July 2013,’ said Koevermans. ‘From that date there will be a new main sponsor. We hope to reveal who that is at the beginning of April. There will definitely be a new name on the shirt as from 1 July 2013.’
For more information, see www.feyblij.nl