Challenge Business started the Southampton Boat Show 2004 with a bang today by announcing three brand new Global Challenge yacht sponsors and a consortium member for Team Save the Children.
At a packed press conference held on the Walcon Marine stand at the Boat Show, Sir Chay BLYTH announced Uniysis/ EMC, Sony and Stelmar Shipping as yacht sponsors and Mellon Bank as a consortium member.
Sir Chay opened his speech by thanking the existing sponsors for their continuing support before welcoming the new companies into the race's sponsorship community. "The Global Challenge is a unique race, offering so many opportunities for such a very wide range of sponsors, as we can see in this room today! Our latest signings bring the number of sponsoring companies involved in the Global Challenge to more than 100.
"We are very proud that the race holds such prestige and is continuing to attract major international blue chip companies. The race continues to build in momentum day by day and these latest signings are testament to this. We look forward to working closely with these companies, and all of our sponsors, to make this the best race yet."
Unisys - a worldwide information technology services and solutions company and EMC - the world leader in products, services, and solutions for information storage and management - are using the sponsorship to showcase their global strategic partnership. The only female skipper, Dee Caffari will be skippering their yacht, which will be emblazoned with the two companies logos.
Joanna BRACE, Marketing Director for Uniysis was at the press conference and explained. "We believe strong relationships are invaluable in achieving strategic goals.
"We also want to engage our customers on a worldwide scale and will be using the Global Challenge as a major delivery vehicle for this purpose. The race also has parallels and synergies with our two companies, including partnership, teamwork and rising to the challenge."
Sony is a massive high street name, manufacturing audio, video, communications and IT with consolidated annual sales of EUR 13.47 billion in Europe alone. The company will be showcasing its VAIO brand, which can be seen on many of Sony's products. Italian skipper, Amedeo SORRENTINO will be taking charge of the VAIO yacht in the race.
"This sailing challenge gives ordinary people an extraordinary opportunity to do something different with their lives," commented Stewart Burness, technical pre-sales manager at Sony. "The same can be said of the unusual way that our VAIO AV/IT and digital imaging products are being used during the race- which proves that it is the people that bring the products to life."
Headquartered in Athens, Greece, Stelmar Shipping, which will be sponsoring Clive Cosby's yacht, provides international transportation services to major oil companies, oil traders and state-owned oil companies.
Adrian McMahon, UK Managing Director, comments. "We're delighted to be participating in the Global Challenge as a Yacht Sponsor. As a shipping company with vessels continually plying the world's oceans, there are many parallels between the event and our business. We look forward to following the progress of Team Stelmar in the 'Worlds Toughest Yacht Race'."
New consortium member, Mellon Bank, which will be aboard Paul KELLY'S Team Save the Children, is a US headquartered company, which dates back to 1869. Today it is one of the leading providers of financial services and is divided into two core business groups - asset management and corporate and institutional services.
Barclays, BG Group, SAIC, BP and Carte Blanche Greetings are sponsoring the other Global Challenge yachts.