Regular readers will know that the vast majority of sailing sponsorships are designed for a business to business audience. Some are lucky enough to rank as major events which drive tourism and investment in regions and towns. While many of sailing’s ‘politicians’ are trying to tear down perceptions that yacht racing is an elitist sport, the backers of the Louis Vuitton Trophy have a vested interest in keeping the sport exclusive.
Bruno Trouble, who has been a driving force behind the new event that features the old Version 5 America’s Cup boats, was once quoted as saying:
“The day we get a pizza company with its brand on the mainsail of a competing yacht, that is the end of the America’s Cup as it is now.”
Major events though, do give local development agencies a great chance to attract investment and business to a region. Any city with the infrastructure and logistical capabilities to host eight professional sailing teams and press and meet their requirements shows that longer term, the same city can provide a good environment for a company to locate a corporate HQ or facility.
Team Côte d’Azur, a promotion and economic development agency for the region around Nice is using the Louis Vuitton Trophyto host a small number of company leaders from Telecom and Life Science sectors. As this is Frnace, company heads were mostly sailing buffs and responded immediately to the development agency’s invitation. The leaders spent a day enjoying the competition while discussing also the reasons that had led them to invest in the Nice Côte d’Azur region to grow their business.
Team Côte d’Azur’s director Philippe Stefanini:
“It is very interesting for us to bring together prospects from different sectors for such a prestigious, exciting venue as the Louis Vuitton Trophy. The exchanges among our guests allow them to grasp the reasons why similar international companies have chosen to locate here and that helps them in their decision making.”