Q+A | Stephen Urquhart, President of OMEGA
Updated: 2013-04-05 07:44
Q: In terms of sports marketing, some brands may choose sailing, some horse racing, some may choose tennis. What is Omega's strategy of sports sponsorship? Any specific criteria? Are there any sports events you are particularly interested in investing in?
A: We tend to choose sports that correspond to the brand's image. Athletics and swimming are good examples. Golf is also important, and while timekeeping doesn't play the same role in that game as it does in others, it is a great platform for Omega because of its fan base. We are supporting Emirates Team New Zealand in its America's Cup campaign so we are involved in one team sport but again, our primary contacts have been with the skippers, the late Sir Peter Blake, Russell Coutts and Dean Barker.
With golf, swimming, athletics, sailing and the Olympic Games, we aren't actively in search of new sports but we are always open to possibilities.
Q: Sports sponsorship is indeed a big deal - what do you think the brand benefits from through such partnerships, especially the Olympic Games?
A: We are uniquely positioned vis-a-vis the Olympic Games because we are visibly present at each venue. Each time a result is posted on a TV screen, our name is next to it and it helps to establish a solid link between Omega and incredibly precise timekeeping. When we have an official role at a golf tournament, we also have a significant on-course presence.
Q: To better promote your role as the official timekeeper at the Sochi Winter Olympic Games, what is your marketing highlight?
A: We have introduced men's and ladies' limited edition watches and we have placed Omega Countdown Clocks in Sochi and at prominent locations in the nine capital cities of the Russian Federation, including Moscow. We will also have a global marketing campaign that will communicate our role as official timekeeper of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games.
Q: Omega is not the only top partner of Olympic Games; so how do you make Omega stand out among the partners and what makes Omega special?
A: Our role is unique among the top Olympic partners. We have an incredibly important function at the Games with our timekeeping and data-handling activities. Omega is part of each event in every single sport. In fact, we're the only partner whose name is visible at all of the Olympic venues. With this visibility comes enormous responsibility, of course, but we welcome the remarkable challenges posed by the Olympic Games.
(China Daily 04/05/2013 page11)