Leading Australian wine Jacob's Creek is taking over from Nescafé as a major sponsor of the US television hit comedy Friends. Brand owner Pernod Ricard signed an £850,000 deal last week with Channel 4 to back the new series which begins on Friday (July 5) and runs for 24 episodes until December. Head of marketing Chris Seale said: "This is the biggest ever broadcast sponsorship by a wine brand in the UK and it will play a major role in increasing the awareness of the 10 wines in the Jacob's Creek range." He said each episode was expected to be viewed by 1.5 million upmarket adults, the majority of whom are regular wine drinkers. {{DRINKS }}