By William Herrera
IWC Schaffhausen recently announced that it has expanded its multi-year partnership with F1 World champions, Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team. The partnership, founded on a shared commitment to excellence, began back in 2013, when the Swiss watchmaker teamed up with the Formula One team from Brackley, UK. This season, IWC welcomes George Russell who will drive alongside fellow IWC ambassador, Sir Lewis Hamilton.
“Our mutual passion for engineering at the highest level is what has brought us together and strengthened the bond between us, resulting in a partnership that is unique in the industry. Over the last almost 10 years, we have formed a strong community. Many members of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One team are now also part of the IWC family. I am looking forward to continuing and expanding our collaboration,” said Christoph Grainger-Herr, CEO of IWC.
While Toto Wolff, Team Principal and CEO of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One team had this to say: “The many parallels between motorsport and watchmaking formed the foundation for our collaboration in 2013. Since then, we have been able to learn a lot from each other and experience many unforgettable moments together. Our actions are always determined by long-term thinking and the extension of our partnership is great news, ahead of the new season and beyond.”
During the launch of the new W13 car last February 18th, IWC as the “Official Engineering Partner” was featured prominently on the cars livery, the drivers’ overalls, gloves and team kit. The extended partnership strengthens the long-term commitment of the team which includes exciting activations planned at select Grands Prix this 2022 season, the first scheduled event will take place during the inaugural Formula 1 Miami Grand Prix 2022.
Both IWC Schaffhausen and Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One are dedicated to integrating sustainable practices in their day to day operations. IWC has been producing watches to last for generations, while maintaining to manage its social and environmental impacts responsibly. In June 2022, IWC will release its third GRI sustainability report, highlighting milestones achieved along with the brand’s future commitments. For its part, Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One is striving to establish itself to become NetZero, which is in line with the 2030 objective of Formula One.
The extended collaboration features the commitment of both global brands to responsible practices, IWC will work with the team to deliver a meaningful contribution to Ignite, the charitable initiative set up by the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One team together with Mercedes driver and World Champion, Sir Lewis Hamilton to improve diversity and inclusion in motorsport. IWC will now be in the forefront of helping young people from under-represented backgrounds to have a chance to attain their dreams of a career in motorsports.
In a statement, Franziska Gsell, Chief Marketing Office of IWC Schaffhausen said: “IWC Schaffhausen and the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One team are not only united by a shared passion for engineering and technical excellence but also by the pursuit of diversity and responsibility in our industries. In this light, the extension of our collaboration to include a contribution to Ignite is an entirely logical step.” Richard Sanders, Commercial Director of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One team had this to say: ““IWC have been a crucial pillar of our partner family over the past decade. We are delighted not only to have extended our long-standing partnership, but also to have evolved it in line with our shared priorities for the years ahead.”
The expanded partnership will see IWC also as a sponsor of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Esports Team. The virtual racing squad is based in a custom-built facility at the Mercedes Brackley headquarters. Professional Esport drivers Bono Huis, Dani Moreno and Jarno Opmeer, train, qualify and compete in a number of virtual multi-round championships, including the F1 Esports Pro Series, of which Opmeer and the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Esports Team are the reigning champions.