The FEI and Longines have today formalised a partnership that sees the Swiss watchmaker become the FEI's first Top Partner in a record multi-million Euro deal. The agreement is worth a nine-digit Euro sum over the next 10 years.
FEI President HRH Princess Haya and Mrs Nayla Hayek, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Swatch Group, were the joint-signatories of the contract in today's official signing ceremony, held during a press conference in Lausanne (SUI), home of the FEI.
Under the new agreement, which marks the biggest partnership deal ever brokered by the FEI and one of the most important global sports partnerships in recent years, Longines has become the Official Timekeeper and Official Watch of the FEI.
The partnership currently involves a number of major rights packages, including the FEI World Rider Rankings for Jumping, official timekeeper of the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ from 2013 onwards and of the FEI World Equestrian Games™ in 2018 and 2022. Additionally, Longines will be title sponsor of the FEI World Endurance Championships in 2016 and 2020.
Longines will be the new title sponsor of the FEI World Cup™ Jumping when the 2013/2014 season starts in October of this year, and will also support an FEI television magazine programme later this year.
A key element of the partnership is a significant investment by Longines in the development – together with the FEI – of cutting-edge time-keeping and data-handling services, including the related technology, specifically for equestrian sport. The development of these services will be for multimedia applications use, giant screens, scoreboards, and for broadcasters as part of the presentation of FEI events around the world.
These properties are only the starting point of the long-term partnership between Longines and the FEI. Longines' status as Official Timekeeper of the FEI opens up a wide array of opportunities for future cooperation in sports projects across the FEI's seven disciplines.
"It is really wonderful to be able to welcome Longines as the FEI's first Top Partner," FEI President HRH Princess Haya said today. "Today is a truly historic day for the FEI and for equestrian sport. Longines and the FEI share a passion for horses, and this long-term agreement more than proves Longines' commitment to our sport. We are delighted to bring Longines into the FEI family and look forward to an enduring collaboration that will benefit equestrian sport in so many different ways.
"The revolutionary development of new technology by Longines will be a fantastic tool to promote our sport and make it easier to understand for a whole new audience. This new agreement will undoubtedly take our sport to a new level, capitalising on the huge new fan base generated by the Olympic equestrian events in London last summer. We could not be more excited about this new partnership."
"This partnership marks a giant step for Longines in the field of equestrian sports", Nayla Hayek, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Swatch Group, said. "It reinforces the traditional and long-lasting commitment of Longines in equestrian sports and makes the brand a major player in this field.
"Longines is not only a partner but also, and on the top of it, a service provider. Guaranteeing the quality and reliability of the timekeeping is a key aspect of our partnership with the FEI. We are looking forward to being involved in the great events organised by the FEI. This multi-faceted partnership also provides us with a great platform to strengthen the Longines brand presence worldwide."
Source: Press release from FEI
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