Energy Team enters agreement with Oracle Racing

French AC team to buy design technology for its AC72 from AC defender

Thursday April 5th 2012, Author: James Boyd, Location: France

French America’s Cup French Challenger, Energy Team, led by brothers Loïck and Bruno Peyron, has just concluded a license agreement with the American Defender Oracle Racing, led by Russell Coutts.

Technology transfer is a key cost-containment feature of the 34th America’s Cup. The French team is licensing a base-line design package for an AC72 class catamaran from the America’s Cup defender.

This agreement enables Energy Team to achieve significant time and budget savings while maximising its highest performance potential with its AC72 wingsailed catamaran in the Louis Vuitton Cup Challenger Series to be held in San Francisco in July and August 2013. The winner of this contest will face Oracle Racing in the America’s Cup, starting on 7 September 2013.

Energy Team has built a solid and successful team which to date been racing on the America’s Cup World Series in the smaller AC45 class. This deal kick-starts its AC72 involvement.

The French team is the fifth team intending to build an AC72.

Rules for the 2013 America’s Cup allow the sale and purchase of designs between teams or from the event organizers’ own Shared Design Program prior to 1 January 2013.

“This agreement will change a lot of things and there are three immediate consequences for us,” said Bruno Peyron. “Firstly, it will allow us to make up for lost time in terms of technological developments in comparison to the top teams, some of which have been working on their projects for more than two years. If we manage to do that, it will allow us to reach the final phase with a boat that can perform extremely well. To finish, the savings in time and money we would have spent on research and development, mean that we can offer the partners we are currently in talks with, an extremely competitive project in terms of communication and return on investment.”

Using the best design package and launching as late as possible, construction of the Energy Team AC72 will be at Multiplast in Vannes (where Bruno Peyron's previous maxi-catamarans were built along with the Banque Populaire maxi-tri in which Loick Peyron and his crew earlier this year set a new Jules Verne Trophy record). The French AC72 is due for completion in March 2013. Three months of intensive training in San Francisco will follow prior to the Louis Vuitton Cup.

Energy Team is offering its partners an unbeatable commercial package in one of the world’s most iconic sporting events. As  Bruno Peyron says: “Our strategy is realistic. With the best design at our disposal, we really think we can surprise everyone in the finals of the Louis Vuitton Cup with a budget of around 15-16 million Euros for the 2012-2013.”

Russell Coutts, CEO ORACLE Racing commented: “The next America’s Cup is all about the best sailors, the fastest boats and an achievable business model. This agreement hits all three targets. Loick and Bruno have achieved fantastic exploits sailing multihulls. With the right technology at their disposal, they have the potential to reach the highest level in the America’s Cup.”

Bruno Peyron, CEO of Energy Team added: “This agreement between Oracle Racing and Energy Team reminds us that times and mentalities have changed, as far as today’s America’s Cup is concerned. I would like to thank Russell Coutts for the trust he has shown in us. We now have everything we need to enable us to succeed, and maybe even pull off a major surprise.”

Loïck Peyron, Skipper of Energy Team said: “This historic agreement expresses symbolically and in the clearest fashion the cultural revolution that is underway in the America's Cup. This is another step forward and a new way of doing things, which illustrates perfectly the frame of mind that is shared by all of those involved in this exceptional event.”

Yann Penfornis, Managing Director of the Multiplast yard said: “We are of course ready to be home for the construction of this first French AC72. A big shed is ready and waiting at Multiplast and I hope that the construction can get underway before the end of June.”

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