Virtual reality pilot to improve fan experience, enable new e-commerce opportunities and inspire people to protect the oceans
The Ocean Race today launched a Metaversum experience pilot with Virtual Regatta and Accenture (NYSE: ACN) to connect fans and businesses to the world-renowned global yacht race in a new way.
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Aerial view of The Ocean Race, Virtual Regatta and Accenture Metaverse Experience. (Photo: Business Wire)
The companies developed a Metaverse environment that allows players and enthusiasts of the official e-sailing game of the race, Virtual Regatta, to participate in exclusive online events, interact with other fans and gain access to team statistics.
“We are entering the metaverse and our collaboration with Virtual Regatta and Accenture because we are explorers and pioneers,” said Richard Brisius, race chairman of The Ocean Race. “Since 1973, we’ve been looking for new ways for people to engage with what’s happening in the ocean.”
Philippe Guigné, Founder and CEO of Virtual Regatta added: “The Metaverse is a new experience powered by Virtual Regatta and The Ocean Race, allowing people to follow the physical and virtual race in a fully digital race village. Gamers and enthusiasts can meet, follow the physical and digital event and much more. This virtual reality setup will further enhance the fan experience.”
Accenture, The Ocean Race and Virtual Regatta also offer e-commerce opportunities for brands to showcase their digital goods and services in the metaverse, such as: For example, active clothing retailer and official clothing partner of the race, Helly Hansen.
Additionally, The Ocean Race’s mission to protect the seas is integrated into the strategy and content of the metaverse. The Racing with Purpose tent, named after the organization’s sustainability program, is an interactive space where visitors can explore how racing supports this goal and how they can get involved. The area includes a science station showing how racing teams collect vital data about the ocean and a learning corner where visitors can discover and download educational programs to inspire youngsters aged 6-16 to protect the oceans. Also featured is the Blue Voice campaign, which gives visitors the opportunity to show their support by signing the Ocean Rights Petition.
“The Metaverse will usher in a new era of our digital lives, breaking down the limitations of the physical world and creating new ways to immerse ourselves and connect as communities,” said David Treat, co-lead of Accenture Group’s Metaverse Continuum business. “Our collaboration with The Ocean Race and Virtual Regatta is helping to reinvent the way people engage with racing, protecting our oceans while creating value for everyone involved.”
Richard Brisius added: “Purpose drives The Ocean Race. Protecting our racetrack and restoring the health of the ocean is vital, and the Metaverse can be a fantastic tool to give the ocean a voice. It’s even more important for us to continue to explore new ways to engage and educate. We realize that it is the young generation that we need to focus on to build ocean literacy as the metaverse is likely to attract many young users. Furthermore, we believe in the merits of Web 3.0 with a metaverse representing a fair Internet controlled by users compared to the current Web 2.0 which is centralized and run by a few entities.”
More than 200,000 players are expected to take part in the Virtual Regatta offshore and inshore versions of the race. There are seven International Monohull Open Class Association (IMOCA) stages and three VO65 Sprint stages at the Virtual Regatta Offshore with new features for an enhanced virtual experience that mimics the real race in which the crews compete.
The Ocean Race Metaverse pilot experience, in partnership with Virtual Regatta and Accenture, will be available to users on a limited basis starting the final week of Stage 3 of the Cape Town to Itajaí, Brazil race.
About the Ocean Race
Since 1973, The Ocean Race has offered the ultimate team test and human adventure like no other. For almost 50 years it has held some of the greatest sailors in an almost mythical setting and has been the proving ground for the legends of our sport.
The 14th edition of The Ocean Race started on January 15, 2023 in Alicante, Spain and will end in Genoa, Italy in early summer 2023. The race will visit nine famous cities around the world over a period of six months (Alicante, Spain – Cabo Verde – Cape Town, South Africa – Itajaí, Brazil – Newport, RI, USA – Aarhus, Denmark – Kiel Fly-By, Germany – The Hague, Netherlands – Genoa, Italy) and will feature a leg with the longest race distance in the event’s 50-year history – a month-long 12,750 nautical mile marathon from Cape Town, South Africa to Itajaí, Brazil. The fleet of mixed crews will for the first time pass all three major southern capes – Cape of Good Hope, Cape Leeuwin, Cape Horn – non-stop.
Along with five confirmed foiling IMOCA teams sailing around the world, six one-design VO65 boats will race on three legs with the option to compete within The Ocean Race for a new trophy called The Ocean Race VO65 Sprint Cup to fight.
Sustainability in the Ocean Race
We have a proven commitment to sustainability and with the support and collaboration of 11th Hour Racing, Founding Partner of the Race Sustainability Program and Premier Partner of The Ocean Race, we inspire action and create tangible results.
Building on our award-winning sustainability legacy, our innovative program, Racing With Purpose, acts as a catalyst for positive change, accelerating the application of innovative solutions to restore marine health.
About virtual regatta
Since its creation in 2006 by Philippe Guigné, the Virtual Regatta Games have been a great success. They allow anyone to compete with the sailors of the physical world as well as enthusiasts around the world. Today, Virtual Regatta is the exclusive partner of World Sailing (International Sailing Federation) and co-organizer of the “eSailing World Championship” and the “Nations Cup” on Virtual Regatta Inshore. Virtual Regatta is also the official and exclusive game of all the most prestigious sailing regattas in the world (Vendée Globe, Route du Rhum, Sydney Hobart, The Ocean Race, America’s Cup). The game is free to play and available on computers, mobiles and tablets with a community of over 1 million active players.
Accenture is a leading global services company that helps the world’s leading businesses, governments and other organizations build their digital core, streamline their operations, accelerate revenue growth and improve citizen services — delivering tangible value quickly and at scale create. We are a talent and innovation-driven company with 738,000 employees serving customers in more than 120 countries. Technology is at the heart of change today, and we are one of the global leaders in driving that change with strong ecosystem relationships. We combine our technological strength with unmatched industry experience, functional know-how and global delivery capability. We are uniquely positioned to deliver tangible results through our broad range of services, solutions and assets across Strategy & Consulting, Technology, Operations, Industry X and Accenture Song. These skills, along with our culture of shared success and commitment to creating 360° value, enable us to help our clients succeed and build trusting, lasting relationships. We measure our success by the 360° value we create for our customers, each other, our shareholders, partners and communities. Visit us at www.accenture.com.
About Helly Hansen
Founded in Norway in 1877, Helly Hansen continues to develop professional clothing that helps people stay alive and feel alive. Drawing on lessons learned from living and working in the world’s harshest environments, the company has brought to market a long list of innovations, including the first supple waterproof fabrics more than 140 years ago. Other breakthroughs include the first fleece fabrics in the 1960s, the first technical base layers in the 1970s made with LIFA® Stay Dry technology, the patented H2Flow™ temperature regulation system and the revolutionary lighter, warmer LIFALOFT™ insulation. Building on Helly Hansen’s proprietary HELLY TECH® waterproof/breathable system, the technical outdoor brand recently introduced the award-winning LIFA INFINITY PRO™ – the company’s most innovative and responsible waterproof/breathable technology to date.
Helly Hansen is a leader in technical sailing and performance skiwear as well as premium workwear. Its uniforms are worn and trusted by more than 55,000 professionals and can be found on Olympians, national teams and in more than 200 ski resorts and mountain guide companies worldwide.
Helly Hansen outerwear, base layers, athletic apparel and footwear are sold in more than 40 countries around the world and the company is owned by Canadian Tire Corporation (CTC). To find out more about the latest Helly Hansen collections, visit www.hellyhansen.com.
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