Emirates Returns as Team New Zealand’s Top Sponsor
America’s Cup syndicate Emirates Team New Zealand have received some good news, with the airline announcing it will return as the team’s major sponsor, which could help it reach the starting line of the challenger series in Bermuda in 2017.
In a Cup cycle full of upheaval, this is the most significant commercial sponsor to announce backing of a team.
“It’s a brick in the wall but a significant one,” Emirates Team New Zealand boss Grant Dalton said from Auckland.
Sir Tim Clark, the airline’s president, said that the decision to renew a relationship that began in 2004 was recognition of the success of Team New Zealand in helping build the Emirates brand globally.
“Our re-commitment for the next America’s Cup challenge … is testament to the spirit, skill and strengths the team has shown,” Clark said. “Our investment in Team New Zealand is one of the reasons Emirates has continued to soar in brand recognition.”
With Russell Coutts as skipper, Team New Zealand swept Dennis Conner in five races off San Diego 20 years ago this month to win the America’s Cup for the first time.
The America’s Cup World Series in Bermuda will be held on 16-18 October and is the first opportunity to see all of the teams racing on the Great Sound.
Original article by Associated Press, The New York Times, May 12, 2015.