SAN FRANCISCO, - Kiwis who have called San Francisco home for the past several months are heading back to New Zealand following the 34th America’s Cup. As they go, they are filled with gratitude for the overwhelming hospitality shown to them by the city of San Francisco.
“Californians and New Zealanders have always shared a deep affection as people of the Pacific, and we maintain strong tourism and trading relationships. The America’s Cup enabled us to take this relationship to a new level. The hospitality we enjoyed during the Cup and the outpouring of support shows the affinity we share. We are truly grateful for the support we received and we want to thank San Francisco’s leaders, businesses and residents for welcoming us with such open arms both on and off the water,” says Leon Grice, New Zealand’s Consul General, Los Angeles. ”Kiwi companies have built even stronger ties with Bay Area leaders and investors. We are disappointed that we didn’t bring the Cup back to New Zealand, but we are very proud of Emirates Team New Zealand and we congratulate successful defender ORACLE TEAM USA,” says Grice.
While the action on the water captivated audiences around the world, the regatta also offered New Zealand a significant business opportunity to showcase New Zealand’s technology, marine, health, food, and beverage sectors through more than 80 events across San Francisco.
“Our experience in San Francisco, one of the world’s iconic cities, has been unbelievably positive,” said Briony Ellis, Director of New Zealand’s America’s Cup Business Program. “The business relationships and partnerships we’ve been able to create have exceeded our expectations and provided a platform to showcase some of the best of New Zealand. At the end of the day, business is all about relationships between people- he tangata. The relationships formed during our program will foster ongoing economic and cultural ties between New Zealand and San Francisco.”
A few other facts about New Zealand’s presence in the Bay include:
- ETNZ set the record for the fastest speed during 2013 America’s Cup racing, hitting 47.6 knots on the San Francisco Bay in September.
- Kiwi sailors make up over 30% of the four racing teams at the America’s Cup.
- More than 25 New Zealand marine companies worked with America’s Cup finalists ETNZ and ORACLE TEAM USA including Cookson Boats, Core Builders Composites, Southern Spars, Salthouse Boatbuilders, MS Engineering, Adhesive Technologies, Stainless Machining , Trimac Machining , C-Tech and Flagz Group Limited.
- New Zealand company Animation Research LTD’s official America’s Cup app, which uses Kiwi-created “Virtual Eye” tracking technology that allows a mass audience to watch the race in real-time for the first time, was downloaded more than 320,000 times since its release.
- 212 New Zealand businesses came to San Francisco during the America’s Cup to showcase their companies and build relationships with key U.S. businesses and venture capitalists.
- 8,800 key influencers, business partners and guests in the Bay Area attended over 86 events showcasing the best of New Zealand.
- Renowned San Francisco waterfront restaurant, Waterbar, served as the country’s flagship restaurant, serving a complete menu of New Zealand food, wine and beverages. Waterbar sold over 11,000 New Zealand oysters and 2,000 bottles of Kiwi wine over the course of the America’s Cup.
- New Zealand pop-up restaurant, Waiheke Island Yacht Club, sold over 3,086 pounds of New Zealand lamb throughout the America’s Cup.
- Additionally, more than 26 other establishments across the city offered authentic New Zealandfood and wine over the summer, including the pop-up Arr Barr, which sold 8,000 bottles of New Zealand Moa beer over 2 days during the America’s Cup.
- Emirates Team New Zealand distributed 10,000 New Zealand flags in San Francisco throughout the Cup, signaling widespread support from fans across the Bay and all over the world.