A recent edition of the Financial Times’ ‘How to Spend it’ magazine which focused on yachts and boating carried 14 advertisements for watches including the inside front cover double spread, back cover and inside back cover. So there is no doubt that marketing folk think that there is a strong link between the demographic who have big boats and those who buy nice timepieces.
Rolex, Omega, Panerai and Corum are just some of the brands that use sponsorship of sailing to promote themselves.
While the supplement was more about the kind of yachts that appeal to Russian billionaires and Rappers, sailing has long been used to promote watches. And now, IWC Schaffhausen, the International Watch Company, has announced a sponsorship deal with Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority (ADTA) to become the first major sponsor of Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing.
According to the press release, this sailing sponsorship deal is a first for the Swiss brand – the first time IWC has backed a top-tier global sports team. The nature of the deal is to “…foster enhanced promotional and awareness initiatives around the team’s pursuit of top honours.” The watch company will also get some real-estate on the Volvo Open 70.
His Excellency Mubarak Al Muhairi, Director General, ADTA – Team Principal for Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing said:
“We share a pioneering spirit based on the fundamentals of tradition. This is a coming together of two organisations that have a great deal in common, including the pursuit of perfection, strong community responsibility, unwavering commitment to sustainable business practices and the environment, and a desire to excel beyond expectation. Together we will chart a course of mutual and steadfast success.”
Georges Kern, CEO, IWC Schaffhausen said:
“For over 140 years, IWC has epitomised values such as engineering excellence, perfection, pioneering spirit, quality and passion. We are proud to put these attributes to the test as the Official Timekeeper for the forthcoming Volvo Ocean Race and to share them with Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing team.”
IWC Schaffhausen is also the Official Timekeeper of the Volvo Ocean Race. The deal, announced in January means that IWC Schaffhausen will present the 24-hour record prize per race leg, which will be awarded during the prize-giving ceremony at each Host Port. They will also award a special prize for the fastest team over 24-hours in the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12. This prize will be presented at the end of the race in Galway, July 2012. The fastest crewmembers will all be awarded an exclusive IWC timepiece.