POOLE’S luxury boat builder Sunseeker is to be an official FIFA partner for this year’s World Cup tournament in Russia.
The partnership was announced at the London Boat Show, with the help of 1966 World Cup hero Sir Geoff Hurst and BT Sport presenter Jake Humphrey.
Sunseeker’s owner, the Chinese conglomerate Dalian Wanda, was signed in 2016 as the top sponsor for the next four World Cups.
It will have access rights to all major FIFA competitions for the next 15 years.
Sunseeker says it will have marketing and branding rights not seen in the marine industry before, giving its clients access to “once in a lifetime” experiences.
Sunseeker’s launch at the London Boat Show also saw Sir Geoff display the replica Jules Rimet Trophy, which replaced the original stolen in Brazil in 1983.
Sunseeker chief executive Phil Popham said: “We are absolutely thrilled to be partnering with the FIFA World Cup in Russia.
“The Wanda partnership has provided Sunseeker with access to the largest sporting event on the planet which is just incredible. This is not only the most prestigious marketing initiative for Sunseeker but for the marine industry as a whole and it will allow us to create some fantastic experiences for our clients as well giving unprecedented exposure to the Sunseeker brand.”
The Jules Rimet Trophy was loaned to Sunseeker by the FIFA World Football Museum in Zurich, along with Roger Hunt’s England shirt from the 1966 competition.
Sir Geoff is the only player to score a hat trick in a World Cup Final, securing England’s famous 4-2 victory over West Germany.
Dalian Wanda Group bought almost 92 per cent of Sunseeker in 2013 in a £320million deal.
The company, which was founded as Poole Power Boats in 1969, employs around 2,500 people and produces around 150 boats every year. It is a major employer in both Poole and Portland.
Sunseeker returned to profit in 2016 after losing £41m two years previously
Its display for the London Boat Show, which runs until Sunday, includes two show debuts, the 76 Yacht and the Predator 57 MKII. The 76 Yacht will also be the largest model at the show.