Bluewater back on board for The Ocean Race in continued war on plastic
Bluewater, the Swedish water company, has extended its sponsorship of the round-the-world sailing challenge now known as The Ocean Race to cover the 2021-22 event.
The company will be the official drinking water provider of the race, and use the association to promote its anti-single-use plastic bottle campaign.
The new deal builds on Bluewater’s partnership with the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race, as the event was then known, in which it contributed innovative water purification solutions at the race villages to turn polluted and wastewater into clean drinking water, a move which is said to have led to the avoidance of 388,000 single-use plastic bottles at the stopovers.
The next edition of The Ocean Race starts in Alicante in Spain in the autumn of 2021 and finishes in Europe in early summer of 2022 with up to nine stopover ports, which have yet to be finalised, and Bluewater’s water hydration stations will be a feature at the race villages.
Johan Salén, the managing director of The Ocean Race, said: “We are proud to announce that we are continuing to work in partnership with Bluewater. Encouraging people to re-evaluate their relationship with plastic and how they consume water is central to our mission and was a key element in reducing our environmental footprint in the previous race.”
Anders Jacobson, the co-founder and chief executive of Blue, the parent company of Bluewater, added: “Following on from our very successful involvement with other prestigious sporting, musical and other events ranging from Formula E to the Cape Town Carnival and the world's largest outdoor yoga event in Hong Kong, we are excited to partner with The Ocean Race as it enters a new era as the leader in the league of sailing sports.
“We look forward to working with The Ocean Race to jointly provide both a thrilling sporting experience as well as actively drive greater worldwide sustainability initiatives and awareness around public water issues and alternatives that can tackle the plastic plague.”
Sustainability will be a central theme of The Ocean Race as evidenced by the deal announced earlier this week with 11th Hour Racing, a company focused on sustainable sailing, to be a top-tier premier partner of the 2021-22 event.
11th Hour Racing was the founding principal partner of the Sustainability Programme for the last Volvo Ocean Race.
Last month, The Ocean Race unveiled its new identity in Alicante, albeit former owner Volvo has been retained as a premier race partner.
Last year, ownership of the race was taken on by Altant Ocean Racing Spain, a group headed up by former Volvo Ocean Race president Richard Brisius, co-president Salén, and their associate Jan Litborn.
Brisius and Salén founded parent company Atlant Ocean Racing, and have a near 30-year association with the global event.