Drone Racing League seals landmark Allianz partnership

German financial services company Allianz has entered into a multi-year global partnership with the Drone Racing League.

Allianz will serve as the title sponsor of the DRL’s elite race circuit, which will become known as the Allianz World Championship series. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but it is widely reported to run for a five-year term with UK newspaper The Times stating it is worth more than $10m (€9.3m).

Under the agreement, Allianz’s logo will feature on the uniforms of DRL pilots, on the starting podiums and throughout the courses.

The 2017 Allianz World Championship will include six races, beginning in June 2017. Each race will feature 16 of the world’s best drone pilots flying custom-designed drones. Races will be held in Miami, New Orleans, Atlanta, Boston, Munich and London.

Races will be held at official Allianz venues, including branded stadiums and corporate facilities, each year.

“To DRL, Allianz is bringing world-renowned brand credibility and a proud history of innovative sports partnerships, including an extensive tradition in auto racing, and an undeniable proof point that the sport of the future has arrived,” DRL chief executive and founder Nicholas Horbaczewski said.

“The scale and long-term nature of the deal shows Allianz's genuine commitment to advancing the sport and will accelerate the introduction of drone racing to audiences around the world.”

The US-based DRL launched in January 2016 and hosted five professional races in its inaugural season.

Allianz’s head of group market management and distribution, Jean-Marc Pailhol, said: “Drones are already an important part of our business so we're excited to align with DRL as they harness the latest technological advancements and reimagine what racing in the 21st century looks like.”