By Jana Madill
We are so proud that our client HSBC Canada Sevens, is just under two weeks away from the opening day of the HSBC Canada Sevens Men’s Rugby Tournament in Vancouver and the event has reached spectator capacity. This will mark the first time the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series lands on Canadian soil and Vancouver fans and partners are ready. For an inaugural event, it is unusual for fans to embrace tickets so early on, but right from the beginning, Canada Sevens has had a loyal following, selling out VIP suites and Premium seating almost immediately. The tournament can attribute their early sell-out to the confidence our fans have in us delivering an overall tournament experience with entertainment for everyone.
The TwentyTen Group along with our partners at Canada Sevens and Rugby Canada, successfully built a family of dedicated partners, amplifying the excitement around this massive international event in Vancouver.
Support from the corporate community has been widespread, and the breadth of Canada Sevens’ sponsors reflect this. The Vancouver tour stop is an annual stop on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, guaranteed for the next four years. As such, it was important for the development of the tournament brand that the partnerships we built reflected the local Canadian and West Coast culture and that makes our stop so unique. We are pleased our partners share this objective and are showcasing their support in equally unique ways. From restaurant to beer to development to tourism, Canada Sevens and the TwentyTen Group have worked with local partners to round-out the support of international sponsors HSBC and DHL.
Vancouver is widely known for its vibrant real estate market, so it made sense to have a market leader in this sector as part of our partnership family. For Premier partner Grosvenor, their decision to invest in Canada Sevens stemmed from a long-time passion for rugby and the thrill that a rugby sevens’ game guarantees to deliver. As a major global developer, Grosvenor Americas has committed to augmenting the crowd’s experience in Vancouver through their title sponsorship of the Club seating section through a multi-year partnership.
Vancouver is also known for its vibrant nightlife, and with 50,000+ fans entering the downtown core over event weekend, our Premier partner The Keg Steakhouse + Bar will be a popular pre and post-game hub for fans. The Keg, founded in North Vancouver in 1971, remains an industry leader in hospitality and a destination for watching sports – the perfect match for Canada Sevens.
A rugby tournament would not be complete without a beer in hand, and this was a category where we placed a lot of thought into developing a unique partnership with local craft brewery Postmark Brewing. As the only stop on the series tour with it’s own beer, there will be many a glass raised of Postmark Canada Sevens IPA throughout the months of March and April. Custom Sevens IPA bottles featuring a stunning Vancouver city skyline and bright red Sevens IPA cans will be available in liquor stores, bars as well as sold at the tournament in BC Place, literally putting our brand in the hands of fans.
The West Coast’s stunning scenery makes Vancouver a top tourism destination and an event of this magnitude provides a platform for marketing initiatives for a multitude of sponsors in this category. Destination British Columbia, Vancouver Airport Authority (YVR), Butchart Gardens, HeliJet and Langara Fishing Adventures will all help to make this a first-class experience for our athletes and international guests.
As we embark on the wild pace leading into the tournament March 12-13, 2016, we are already looking ahead to the debut of rugby sevens at the Olympic Games in Rio later this year. Deemed one of the fastest growing sports in the world, participation and viewership of rugby is outpacing other more traditional sports. Partners of the tournament are already planning for 2017, building momentum for the growth of the sport here at home. And we’re in it for the long haul, with everyone at TwentyTen Group excited about planning partnerships and activations that help build connections for long term Canada Sevens success.