De Lage Landen, a global provider of asset-based financing programmes, announced today at the HISWA Amsterdam Boat Show that it will enter the Clipper 11-12 Round the World Yacht Race. In addition, their involvement in the race has secured the inaugural stopover for the Netherlands; the ten-strong Clipper fleet will make an official host port visit to the Netherlands in July 2012.
Based in Eindhoven, De Lage Landen has recently launched a worldwide engagement programme for their 5,000 employees in almost 40 countries. Aiming to increase synergies across the global network, the Clipper Race programme will support the further development of business and growth in worldwide markets and aims to ensure De Lage Landen continues to be an employer of choice. The company recognises that people are its most important asset and wants to provide an inspiring platform to connect all of its employees.
Inspired by the Clipper ethos, ‘Raced by People Like You’, De Lage Landen hopes that the way the race crew face challenges as one team, will provide many inspiring examples in everyday practice.
Ronald Slaats, CEO of De Lage Landen, says, 'Partnership lies at the core of our company. Participating in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race allows us to leverage our partnerships with customers, employees and other stakeholders in a new and fascinating way. It didn’t take us long to realise that the philosophy behind this race relates directly to the way we like to do business.'
The Clipper Race is the only event of its kind for people from all walks of life regardless of previous sailing experience, offering them a challenge of a lifetime and the opportunity to take on the thrills and spills of ocean racing. Part of De Lage Landen’s employee engagement programme will be the participation in the race of eight specially selected employees who will compete as a tag team around the world.
The Clipper Race was set up by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, the first man to sail solo, non-stop around the world, in order to give ordinary people the chance to do something truly extraordinary.
Speaking at the announcement, Sir Robin said, 'We are extremely pleased to welcome De Lage Landen on board as an official yacht sponsor in the race. De Lage Landen’s vision to use the race to unite their employees around the globe is another exciting demonstration of how our sponsors and partners can utilise the event. We hope that, as other sponsors have discovered, participation in the race will enable De Lage Landen to build a unique legacy that will last for years to come.
The yacht entry will be named De Lage Landen embraces the world and will be one of ten identical 68-foot ocean racing yachts, each of which is traditionally named after a city, region or country around the world. De Lage Landen translates as ‘The Low Countries’ - the historical lands around the low-lying delta of the Rhine, Scheldt, and Meuse rivers and includes the modern country of The Netherlands. Carrying the Dutch national flag on its mainsail, De Lage Landen will join an international line up including the Keppel sponsored entry Singapore and the Chinese entry, Qingdao, for whom hosting the Clipper Race was a key step in securing the rights the sailing events of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. Also making their debut in Clipper 11-12 is the UK City of Culture for 2013, Derry-Londonderry. The Northern Irish city will use the race to market its culture, business and education offerings in a number of the cities on the Clipper 11-12 route.
Setting off from a UK port in August, Clipper 11-12 is the world’s longest yacht race and will see the ten-strong fleet race 40,000 miles around the globe stopping at 15 ports on six continents over the course of the eleven-month race. Making its debut as a Clipper Race stopover, the Netherlands will welcome the fleet in July 2012 as the penultimate destination of the world’s longest yacht race.
Sir Robin says, 'We hope that people from across the Netherlands will use this opportunity to sign up and take part and that everyone, from De Lage Landen employees worldwide to Dutch nationals will get behind their team and support them over the course of this highly contested race.'
There are still berths available for people from the Netherlands to compete in the Clipper 11-12 Round the World Yacht Race. The minimum age for crew is 18 and there is no upper age limit. No previous sailing experience is required as all crew go through a comprehensive pre-race training programme.
More information can be found on the Clipper Race website: Click here