Glanbia’s Optimum Nutrition brand to sponsor McLaren F1 team

Illinois-based maker of protein powders will feature on the driver and pit crew overalls for the 2024 season and beyond

Glanbia’s top-selling Optimum Nutrition brand is to sponsor the McLaren Formula One team in a multi-million euro deal.

While the exact financial details of the tie-up were not disclosed, the Illinois-based maker of protein powders, which was acquired by Glanbia in 2008, will feature on the driver and pit crew overalls for the 2024 season, which begins next month, and beyond.

The multi-year deal was described as Optimum Nutrition’s “first global sponsorship at this scale”.

“We’re delighted that Optimum Nutrition, which has been trusted by all types of athletes across many sports for 35 years, has joined McLaren Racing as official sports nutrition partner,” Glanbia performance nutrition’s chief brand officer Colin Westcott-Pitt said.


“Both McLaren and Optimum Nutrition are dedicated to peak human performance and excellence, so we are thrilled to be working together during the forthcoming F1 season,” he said.

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According to McLaren’s website, it has a portfolio of 49 sponsors, including the Glanbia unit. Optimum Nutrition appears to be in the fourth tier of backers, out of seven tiers.

The suite of protein powders sold under the Optimum Nutrition label generated just over $950 million (€882 million) in revenue for the Kilkenny-headquartered food company last year but passed the $1 billion mark in terms of retail value, making it Glanbia’s first billion dollar brand.

The company acquired the maker of nutritional supplements for gym-goers in 2008 for €213 million, seeing an opportunity to grow the business. It had previously supplied it with whey for use in various products.

Glanbia is a world leader in the performance nutrition sector, which is said to be worth about €20 billion globally.

Matt Dennington, executive director, partnerships and accelerator of McLaren Racing, said: “It is great to welcome Optimum Nutrition to the team.

“We operate in a high-performance environment and our people are our most important asset, so it’s fantastic that Optimum Nutrition will support our continuous push for improvement and excellence across everything we do.”

Eoin Burke-Kennedy

Eoin Burke-Kennedy

Eoin Burke-Kennedy is Economics Correspondent of The Irish Times