Monday 5 December 2016

Dublin marketing guru hired to drive Ferrari's Asian growth

Simon Rowe

Published 21/08/2016 | 02:30

Mike Farnan. Photo: David Conachy
Mike Farnan. Photo: David Conachy

Dublin-born international marketing guru Mike Farnan has been brought in to help steer Ferrari's growth strategy in China.

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The luxury sports car manufacturer, which has seen a 26pc boom in supercar sales in China this quarter, has hired the former managing director of Manchester United International to leverage the iconic brand in Asia.

Farnan has 25 years' experience of marketing sports brands internationally, including Manchester United, Jordan Grand Prix and Sunderland FC. He oversaw Man Utd's global merchandising growth from 1996 to 2001, and was responsible for opening retail stores and team-branded Red Cafes across Asia.

His company Red Strike Marketing has been signed up to advise Ferrari and its China-based partners on an Asia-wide marketing drive.

"When Ferrari was listed on the New York Stock Exchange last October they started to look more closely at brand extensions globally, but particularly Asia - that's where I was brought in," said Farnan.

"Asia is where our strength is, in terms of global marketing expertise. I was brought in to look at leveraging the brand in China, South-East Asia and Korea.

"Our aim is to make the iconic Ferrari brand more tangible to its 560 million fans worldwide, especially in China. China is fascinated by superbrands and sports superbrands in particular."

It is likely that Farnan will play a role in the massive marketing campaign around the launch of a new Ferrari theme park set to begin construction in Beijing.

The new park will join existing Ferrari-themed parks in Abu Dhabi (Ferrari World) and Barcelona, Spain (Ferrari Land).

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