Mumbai, 02 November 2015—In a first for both Tata Motors and Lionel Messi, the Indian carmaker has signed up the global football star to a long-term posting as the brand ambassador for their passenger vehicle line. For the first time, Tata will be mounting a campaign to distinguish their brand through association with a celebrity ambassador. And, the appointment is to be Messi’s first ever with an Indian company.

Lionel Messi and Tata's Mayank Pareek
Lionel Messi and Tata’s Mayank Pareek
Tata GenX Nano micro-hatchback
Tata GenX Nano micro-hatchback

Tata says that the appointment of Messi comes after they experienced encouraging month-on-month growth in their passenger car line with the recent launch of their GenX Nano micro hatchback, Bolt sub-compact hatchback and Zest sub-compact sedan. Messi’s long-term posting will be first featured in the Tata’s #madeofgreat publicity campaign which puts the football star front and center in the carmaker’s message that “what drives us from within is what makes us great.”

Tata Zest sub-compact sedan
Tata Zest sub-compact sedan

Tata Motors’ Passenger Vehicle Business Unit President, Mayank Pareek, announced the Messi’s ambassadorship, saying, “… Lionel Messi … is talent galore with conviction, and is an icon for today’s youth. Watching him play is magical. His determination on the field is awe-insipiring. He is a winner who is trustworthy, reliable, pioneering, simple and driven by self-belief, which is the core idea of this campaign.”

In turn, Messi confirmed his endorsement of Tata, saying, “I am very excited about my first association with an Indian brand … I have always been fascinated by India and have heard such great things about this diverse country … Tata Motors is a true representation of India and a well-established brand, globally.”

Tata Bolt sub-compact hatchback
Tata Bolt sub-compact hatchback

Echoing the message of the #madeofgreat campaign and why Tata chose him to personify it, Messi further said, “It is important to believe in yourself and keep pushing to achieve success … that is what the first campaign stands for. I hope, together, we are able to inspire many more.”

The fact that Tata has secured Messi’s endorsement already speaks volumes about the company’s intent. The move steers Tata clear of any claims or aspirations for up-market polish and finery, and instead puts them beside the athlete Messi whose history of struggle and eventual success at a global sport that transcends social classes, blue and white-collar fans blending in the bleachers, already reveals how it’s  aiming for a similar narrative.

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