Longines formalizes record 10-year partnership

Lausanne (SUI), Jan 15, 2013: The FEI and Longines have today formalized a partnership that sees the Swiss watchmaker become the FEI’s first Top Partner in a record multi-million Euro deal. The agreement is worth a nine-digit Euro sum over the next 10 years.

FEI President HRH Princess Haya and Mrs Nayla Hayek, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Swatch Group, were the joint-signatories of the contract in today’s official signing ceremony, held during a press conference in Lausanne (SUI), home of the FEI.

Under the new agreement, which marks the biggest partnership deal ever brokered by the FEI and one of the most important global sports partnerships in recent years, Longines has become the Official Timekeeper and Official Watch of the FEI.

The partnership currently involves a number of major rights packages, including the FEI World Rider Rankings for Jumping, official timekeeper of the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ from 2013 onwards and of the FEI World Equestrian Games™ in 2018 and 2022. Additionally, Longines will be title sponsor of the FEI World Endurance Championships in 2016 and 2020.

Longines will be the new title sponsor of the FEI World Cup™ Jumping when the 2013/2014 season starts in October of this year, and will also support an FEI television magazine programme later this year.

A key element of the partnership is a significant investment by Longines in the development – together with the FEI – of cutting-edge time-keeping and data-handling services, including the related technology, specifically for equestrian sport. The development of these services will be for multimedia applications use, giant screens, scoreboards, and for broadcasters as part of the presentation of FEI events around the world.

These properties are only the starting point of the long-term partnership between Longines and the FEI. Longines’ status as Official Timekeeper of the FEI opens up a wide array of opportunities for future cooperation in sports projects across the FEI’s seven disciplines.

“It is really wonderful to be able to welcome Longines as the FEI’s first Top Partner,” FEI President HRH Princess Haya said today. “Today is a truly historic day for the FEI and for equestrian sport. Longines and the FEI share a passion for horses, and this long-term agreement more than proves Longines’ commitment to our sport. We are delighted to bring Longines into the FEI family and look forward to an enduring collaboration that will benefit equestrian sport in so many different ways.

“The revolutionary development of new technology by Longines will be a fantastic tool to promote our sport and make it easier to understand for a whole new audience. This new agreement will undoubtedly take our sport to a new level, capitalising on the huge new fan base generated by the Olympic equestrian events in London last summer. We could not be more excited about this new partnership.”

“This partnership marks a giant step for Longines in the field of equestrian sports”, Nayla Hayek, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Swatch Group, said. “It reinforces the traditional and long-lasting commitment of Longines in equestrian sports and makes the brand a major player in this field.

“Longines is not only a partner but also, and on the top of it, a service provider. Guaranteeing the quality and reliability of the timekeeping is a key aspect of our partnership with the FEI. We are looking forward to being involved in the great events organised by the FEI. This multi-faceted partnership also provides us with a great platform to strengthen the Longines brand presence worldwide.”

About Longines

Longines has been based at Saint-Imier (SUI) since 1832. Its watchmaking expertise reflects a strong devotion to tradition, elegance and performance. It has generations of experience as the official timekeeper at world championships and as a partner of international sports federations.

Longines has established a network of links with the world of sport timekeeping which has enabled it to offer its skilled services to various prestigious sports during the 20th century. Today, it follows its vocation in the field of sports timing, namely in gymnastics, archery, alpine skiing, equestrian sports and at the French Open at Roland-Garros.

Longines’ passion for equestrian sports began in 1878, when a timepiece was made with a horse and jockey engraved on the watch face. Over the years, the brand has built strong and long-lasting links with equestrian sports. In 1926, for the first time, the brand was involved as timekeeper for the Official International Equestrian Competition of Geneva. Today, Longines’ involvement in equestrianism includes Jumping, Endurance and flat racing.

Longines is a member of The Swatch Group S.A., the world’s leading manufacturer of horological products. With an excellent reputation for creating refined timepieces, the brand, whose emblem is the winged hourglass, has outlets in over 130 countries.

About FEI

The Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI), founded in 1921, is the international body governing equestrian sport recognised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). Equestrian sport has been on the Olympic programme since 1912 with three disciplines: Jumping, Dressage and Eventing. The FEI is based on the principle of equality and mutual respect between all 133 affiliated National Federations, without prejudice to race, religion or internal politics.

The FEI is the sole controlling authority for all international events in Dressage & Para-Equestrian Dressage, Jumping, Eventing, Driving & Para-Equestrian Driving, Endurance, Vaulting, and Reining. The FEI establishes the regulations and approves equestrian programmes at Championships, Continental and Regional Games, and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. The Federation promotes equestrianism in all its forms and encourages the development of the FEI equestrian disciplines throughout the world, keeping the welfare of the horse at the heart of all its activities.

“The primary mission of the FEI is to advance the orderly growth of equestrian sport worldwide by promoting, regulating and administering humane and sportsmanlike international competition in the traditional equestrian disciplines” – FEI Mission Statement. —- FEI/Pictures © Sandro Campado/FEI

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