Jul 29, 2010, 4:38 PM
Post #1 of 3
For Immediate Release
Sole US Entry in Velux 5 Oceans Seeks Corporate Partner
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VAN LIEW CHRISTENS BOAT WITH VIVID GRAPHICS AND 'BACK TO ROOTS' NAME FOR ECO 60 ROUND THE WORLD RACE
Sole US Entry in Velux 5 Oceans Race Looks to Boat's Origins and Professional Design Team for Name, Branding
JULY 29, 2010 (Charleston, SC) - It's not a comfortable position, but Brad Van Liew has been here before.
Just a few short months away from the start of a world-class sailing race that sends skippers around the globe alone, Van Liew is mentally and physically prepared to win. He has a stellar racing machine, fine-tuned by the best in the business. His boat's electronics package, cameras and communication gear, and renewable energy systems are in place. His shore support team and family are primed for this - one of the most exciting adventures possible. Tens of thousands of fans are ready to follow Brad's adventure online. Yet despite all this, Van Liew is still missing one major piece of the puzzle: A corporate partner to name the boat and brand some 8,000 square feet of space onboard.
"I've done this race twice before, and I've always had faith that 'if you build it, they will come,'" Van Liew said. "It's financially risky and requires some serious intestinal fortitude, but a project like this doesn't fit into the standard mold for sports sponsorship in the USA, and it always seems we need to put the 'canvas' in front of sponsors for them to understand and appreciate the potential."
Van Liew's 'ECO 60' is one of the fastest of its kind, a high-tech, carbon fiber thoroughbred racing yacht, designed from the ground up for singlehanded, transoceanic racing. He has christened the boat "Le Pingouin" - a name that harkens back to the boat's original days, when French solo racer Catherine Chabaud named it after the birds that she would see as she passed remote rocky islets like the Kerguelens in the desolate Southern Ocean. The yacht has been registered with that name ever since, even when companies like Whirlpool, Tiscali, and Pro-Forms had their names emblazoned on the deck and hull from stem to stern. Today, a different kind of logo covers the boat's hull - a fierce, determined penguin set against NASCAR yellow - that signals Brad's intent to dominate this race as he did in 2002-3 with Tommy Hilfiger. Charleston creative design firm Cre843 developed the original artwork to showcase the vast potential for corporate visuals on the hull, deck and sails.
"Our friends at Cre843 did a gorgeous job with the graphics, and like me, the penguin thrives in cold water and does whatever it needs to survive in any weather," said Van Liew. "But despite the integrated look, we've designed the logo job to be easily removable, leaving a blank canvas for prospective title sponsors to wrap the boat with graphics and logos that best represent their company." A big racing boat like this is one of the most innovative and effective mobile billboards there are, and the value comes from the personalization of the sponsor's brand in the non-stop drama and media exposure over the 9 months of the race, through locations on 5 continents in premium markets around the world.
When asked if he is nervous with the race start looming, Van Liew nodded with a slight grin. "Balance Bar came aboard just weeks before our start in '98, while Tommy joined us just a few months before the 2002 race, so we're unfortunately used to the uncertainty," he said. Both partnerships were extremely successful, generating millions in media value and seeing Van Liew on the covers of major national magazines and newspapers, and interviewed via satellite on national TV networks. Van Liew placed 3rd in class as a rookie in the '98 event, and dominated his class in the '02-3 race, setting records for every leg. He's confident that 2010 will once again provide a turn-key opportunity for a company that's ready to think 'outside the box' of traditional marketing.
What if Van Liew doesn't secure a title sponsor before the October start? "I'll just rely on my amazing team, stalwart supporters, the great sponsors we've already partnered with, and the thousands of volunteers and donors that have brought me this far, and we'll go win another one."
When Van Liew finishes the Velux 5 Oceans 2010-11 race, he will become the first American in history to officially finish three solo round-the-world races. Companies supporting Van Liew's campaign include B&G, Simrad, Gill, Samson, Awlgrip, Harken, High and Dry Boatworks, West Marine, Alpine Aire, Detyens, CMMC Machine, Charleston Rigging, Pierside Boatworks, Seabreeze Marina and many others.
The Velux 5 Oceans starts from La Rochelle in France on October 17, 2010 and features five ocean sprints. After heading from La Rochelle, France to Cape Town, South Africa, the race heads across the vast Southern Indian Ocean to Wellington, New Zealand. From there, the racing yachts will head to Salvador, Brazil, then up the Atlantic to Charleston, USA before returning across the ocean to France to the finish.
For further information on Brad Van Liew or Team Lazarus, please contact:
Meaghan Van Liew
M: + 1 843-814-3966