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Volvo Ocean Race 3.0 and its Business Value

How could sponsors get a greater take away on their business value from the Volvo Ocean Race? From a sports point of view, the Volvo Ocean Race has achieved a very strong and positive position with

Volvo Ocean Race

How could sponsors get a greater take away on their business value from the Volvo Ocean Race?

From a sports point of view, the Volvo Ocean Race has achieved a very strong and positive position with its two last editions. The VOR started a new chapter in the history of this extraordinary sailing challenge and for sure this has significantly increased the value of the global brand Volvo Ocean Race and of Volvo as its main partner. At least in the world of sailing.

Without any doubt, CEO Knut Frosted, who just retired, had a significant influence on this development. But what about the other side, the business model of the Volvo Ocean Race? What is the real benefit for sponsors and business partners? How difficult is the ‘struggle’ to find sponsors and to build successful campaigns? It’s probably as challenging as the sailing race around the world.

As #BrandNomads we made a simple ‘what if’ session and developed ten possible enlightenments as followed:

#what if 01
What if the Volvo Ocean Race established a business hub and created a new platform for companies, regardless of whether this is a sponsor or an entrepreneur with an interest in sailing? From a keynote of one of the ocean sailors, to business coaching through to seminars, workshops and business meetings, all formats could be conceivable and be delivered through this hub.

#what if 02
What if the VOR created a Volvo Ocean Race Business Academy alongside the Sailing Academy? This academy could give access to a network of consultants and experts with various experiences and the VOR academy could organize business events and seminars. And these could be offered around the globe with the same stopovers as the sailing race.

#what if 03
What if this academy also offered corporate events like ‘Think & Sail’? Sailing and business professionals would act together as coaches at these events, delivering team spirit, motivation, experiences and business direction for the involved corporate businesses.

#what if 04
What if this academy also offered attractive Co-Working spaces and venues in marinas or even on the water and would make these places available and bookable?

#what if 05
What if these activities were centralized in a unique online platform? It would be another add-on for businesses and entrepreneurs, who could connect there. All driven by the common interest in sailing. This could be the opportunity to build a completely new community for the Volvo Ocean Race.

#what if 06
What if the Volvo Ocean Race generated a more day by day visibility, instead of being a sport and media highlight only every three years? With the connections and the brand power of the Volvo Group, it should be easy to kick of such a B2B engagement.


#what if 07
What if sponsors were then no longer only donors, but rather Co-Creators? The Volvo Ocean Race would generate a business crowd, and the development of teams and campaigns could be enabled with a much more agile and dynamic approach through this system. Thus, the commitment of a company would depend less on the pure moment of the race or its stopovers, but provide a much more sustainable contribution to its corporate value.

#what if 08
And what if the VOR Sailing Academy emerged and were uplifted by training offers and sailing camps around the globe to engage new audiences with the fascination of sailing? These new sailing camps should be strongly committed to sport and sailing clubs to create a dedicated next generation of sailors with enthusiasm, motivation, training and methods. At the same time this would build a much stronger local identification and involvement for the VOR brand.

#what if 09
What if also the VOR R&D no longer operated as a silo and in a niche and was much more open as a leading resource? With an innovative expansion of the R&D scope in fields like health, materials, technology and management new chapters could well be enabled. Again, sponsors would become Co-Creators and develop together with the VOR.

#what if 10
What if the Volvo Ocean Race pushed these new areas with the same passion as it pushes the sailing fascination every three/four-years? What if they were able to set up Volvo Ocean Race 3.0 already in 2017/2018? I will be on board for sure!
Perhaps fans then no longer have to wonder when and if there will be a next edition of the Volvo Ocean Race. After all, it is still one of the few global historic sport events. Value enough to even re-think and create the version 3.0, which has a better fit with a transformed world.

For the fans of the Volvo Ocean Race here are two campaign links for the upcoming edition 2017/2018:

  • The German campaign, driven by top sailor Robert Stanjek: German Ocean Racing Team
  • He was one of the ‚rookies‘ of the VOR 2014/2015, Charlie Enright, skipper team Alvimedica, and wants to set up a team for the race 2017/2018 together with his partner Mark Towill. Find out more about the US-Team ’55 south’

Holger Ambroselli has worked in brand and strategy development as entrepreneur and consultant for many years. His international experience and knowledge in intercultural brand management have made him a sought-after strategy thinker, keynote speaker and brand coach. He is also one of the drivers behind ‚Sam’s Strategy Kitchen‘, which supports a company’s transformation by creating customer and business value through experience design innovation.