Constellation Energy Group has announced that it is committing $500,000 as title sponsor of the Baltimore-Annapolis stopover of the Volvo Ocean race

Constellation Energy Group has announced that it is committing $500,000 as title sponsor of the Baltimore-Annapolis stopover of the Volvo Ocean race. The round-the-world sailing competition will return to the region for the third time as part of a planned stopover in April 2006. “Constellation Energy is thrilled to be the title sponsor of the Volvo Ocean Race US stopover and is equally proud of its role in helping to bring this prestigious sailing event back to Maryland,” said Mike Wallace, president of Constellation Generation Group and a board member of stopover organising committee, Ocean Race Chesapeake. “Constellation Energy is justifiably proud of its long and rich history of community involvement and this race provides a significant economic stimulus for the region, positioning Baltimore and Annapolis on the centre stage of international sailing circles. Constellation Energy Group, a Fortune 500 company based in Baltimore, is the nation’s leading competitive supplier of electricity to large commercial and industrial customers and one of the nation’s largest wholesale power sellers. Constellation also manages fuels and energy services on behalf of energy intensive industries and utilities. It owns and operates a diversified fleet of power plants throughout the United States. Volvo Ocean Race CEO Glenn Bourke said, “We are very pleased to be bringing the event back to Baltimore and Annapolis for the third time. The funding from Constellation Energy will enable the stopover to be even better than on the two previous occasions and we congratulate Ocean Race Chesapeake for securing this sponsorship.” “The Volvo Ocean Race will once again focus the international sailing community squarely on Baltimore and Annapolis,” said Gov. Robert Ehrlich. “The State of Maryland has a long and rich maritime heritage, a fact which is a great source of pride for all of us. We’re very pleased that Constellation Energy has made the Volvo Ocean Race such a high priority and for ensuring that this spectacular event returns to our region. The race will not only focus a great deal of media attention on our region, it also promises to have an immensely positive economic and educational impact well beyond the docks in both Baltimore and Annapolis.” Preliminary estimates indicate that the race could generate more than $50 million directly and indirectly from the 450,000 visitors who are expected to be drawn to Baltimore’s Inner Harbour and Annapolis City Dock, according to the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development. Race villages in Baltimore and Annapolis will be focal points for hospitality activities. The Volvo Ocean Race The Volvo Ocean Race will start with an in port race in Sanxenxo, Galicia, on November 5, 2005. The start of leg one, the first offshore leg, will be from Vigo, Galicia, on November 12, 2005. The Volvo Ocean race is a round the world yacht race featuring nine offshore racing legs. Included in the 2005-2006 event will be an inshore race at each of the main stopover ports including the start port in Galicia. Four teams from the last race measured the media value of their exposure. The results showed an average of US$50 million, which equates to a 200-300% return on their sponsorship investment. Volvo Ocean Race achieved a cumulative audience of over 800 million viewers ranking it among the top international sporting events. Research on awareness of the competing teams was also conducted which again showed an increase by up to 30% for some sponsors.