Press release: Allianz-Arena, Munich, February 2008
Ebel scores another winning goal in the world of prestige football
2008 sees the world-renowned Munich-based FC Bayern Munich opting for a strategic alliance with the Ebel watch brand. In June 2007, the latter had already announced its partnership with FC Arsenal, another of Europe’s leading football clubs, and is now clearly stepping up the pace of its commitment to the world of football.
Ebel CEO Thomas van der Kallen, Managing Director for Ebel Germany Loek Oprinsen and, FC Bayern’s Executive Board Chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge held a press conference in Munich on February 10th 2008 to officially announce their partnership starting July 1st 2008 and running for the next five years. As Official Timing Partner for FC Bayern Munich, Ebel will take responsibility for all timekeeping aspects during home games. Ebel will provide the timing interface for fans within the Allianz-Arena and the presence of the watch brand will also bring a new timekeeping sophistication at the Club, particularly within the VVIP and Business Club lounges.
Delighted with this new agreement, Thomas van der Kallen pointed out that “after her first alliance with Arsenal last year, FC Bayern Munich represents an important and decisive stage in our approach to the football world, since it is an undeniable leader in this sport. We are already discussing possible partnerships with other major European clubs and we intend in due course to develop a full-fledged Ebel family of prestigious football clubs”.
Elite partners only
Ebel’s strategic vision in football is to associate with only the most prestigious clubs, belonging to the recognized elite of European football, and representing much more than simple football teams. FC Bayern Munich and Arsenal uphold the principles of excellence and hard work, have a genuine history (stretching back over a century), and enjoy international renown consistently enhanced by famous and great players. Both clubs have always been and still are at the very top of their respective championships, commanding respect and admiration, as well as an authoritative status that extends far beyond the soccer field. What is more, they are all committed to cultivating the finest sporting values such as respect for a noble heritage and dedication to perfecting their craft. Exactly the kind of deep-rooted values that guide Ebel in its approach to the art of watchmaking and in its choice of future football club partners. During the conference, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said he was “very proud to have concluded the rapprochement of the prestigious FC Bayern Munich football club with a luxury watch brand such as Ebel, since both shared so many common denominators that the osmosis was bound to be perfect. This long-running partnership will further strengthen the equity of both our names and our identities.”
A limited edition of timepieces dedicated to football
To symbolize this alliance between watchmaking precision and sporting ethics, Ebel has decided to launch a very special and unique timepiece dedicated to football. Far from confining themselves to cosmetic issues, Ebel watchmakers spent many long hours developing an exclusive movement specifically designed for football: Calibre 245. Developed, assembled and tested in the brand’s La Chaux-de-Fonds workshops, it is ideally suited to football because it not only measures each half time of a match (hence its name “245” standing for 2 x 45 minutes), as well as indicating extra time. Reading off elapsed time is ultra-legible thanks to the oversized 45-minute counter. The new football caliber will be housed in a new model enriching the 1911 line, issued in limited editions bearing the insignia of each club and available as of October 2008. Ebel has already worked with the Arsenal and FC Bayern Munich management on developing highly emblematic versions for each club. “This movement is a world première as it is the first proprietary movement ever to keep step with football match time”, said Thomas van der Kallen unveiling the face of the FC Bayern Munich limited timepiece by Ebel. Meanwhile, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge stated “I am very happy to have played an active part in the birth of this avant-grade watch that represents the quintessence of the values and the spirit of our club”.
FC Bayern Munich – a blend of power and prestige
Currently heading the German Bundesliga and a brand name synonymous with excellence, success and high performance well beyond national and European borders, FC Bayern Munich is the proud winner of two 2 Intercontinental Cups, 4 European Champions League titles, 1 UEFA Cup title, 1 Cup Winners’ Cup title, 19 national championships, and 13 German Cups – making it beyond a doubt Germany’s foremost football club.
The Architects of Time are naturally extremely proud to be associated with this club and its emblematic new Allianz-Arena. Contemporary football gives pride of place to architecture, and FC Bayern Munich is a perfect illustration of this tendency. Completed in April 2005, the Allianz-Arena features an incredibly innovative design created by famous Swiss architects Herzog&deMeuron. In the latter’s own words, this achievement offers a “futuristic interpretation of the basic football concept” and its breathtaking exterior will be lit up during home games by a cascade of red projected onto the smooth translucent shell, thus “infusing the structure with an almost magical poetry”.
There was certainly no better place in which to announce this new alliance between Ebel and FC Bayern Munich the Architects of Time and the Architects of Victory.