by Matt Carter
The British Sailing Team will enter a new commercial chapter on the road to Rio 2016 as Skandia, the long term sponsor of the team, has announced it is to end its successful partnership when the current contract comes to a close in March 2013.
Skandia Team GBR logo
Skandia’s parent company, Old Mutual, is to rebrand its Skandia branded businesses in Europe to Old Mutual Wealth over the coming year, and due to the changes, existing sponsorship contracts will be not be re-signed while this rebrand is underway and the group determines its new sponsorship strategy.
Michelle Andrews, marketing director at Skandia said: 'Our partnership with the British Sailing Team has been hugely successful for us and the team. It has been great to see them achieve so much over the past few years and we hope their success continues long into the future.'
The Royal Yachting Association’s Olympic Manager, Stephen Park, said: 'Skandia has been a superb partner for the RYA for the past seven years and we are hugely grateful for their support, which not only has made a medal-winning performance difference, but has also helped elevate sailing and its personalities in the public consciousness during a unique period for British sport.
'We’re equally pleased that we have been able to provide a unique marketing platform for Skandia during our partnership, and hope to be able to provide another brand who shares our high performance values with the same success as we look forward to the new cycle.'
Sailing remains one of Great Britain’s most consistently high-performing sports, winning seven medals across the 13 sailing classes at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and winning 51 medals at World and European Championships in this current cycle since 2009.
The RYA is looking to replace Skandia with another partner or multiple partners, but is looking to have a continuity of sponsors across the grassroots sector of sailing through to the Olympic and Paralympic Classes sailing scene and potentially other areas of the RYA’s extensive activities.
The investment into the British Sailing Team from commercial sponsors comes in addition to the UK Sport National Lottery funding that sailing receives, and allows core areas of the programme to be developed. Increased contact time for coaches and support staff, improved infrastructure and facilities, and technical and sports science research and developments are all support by the commercial programme.
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