JLL is sponsoring six up-and-coming athletes from Australia, Hong Kong, India, Japan and Singapore, bringing them one step closer to achieving their ambitions of competing in climbing on a global stage.
According to the International Federation of Sport Climbing, it is estimated that there are 25 million recreational climbers globally. Currently practised in over 140 countries with six million registered climbers, it will also be included as an Olympic sport for the first time ever in 2020.
“Here at JLL, we understand the heartbeat of cities, and how that influences the way the athletes live and train. Indoor climbing is an exciting urban sport that reflects the vibrancy and dynamism of the region’s rapidly growing cities – a perfect fit of our brand,” explains Ms Nicole Worthington, Chief Marketing Officer, JLL Asia Pacific.
“This first-of-its-kind sports sponsorship is part of our marketing strategy to bring to life our vision of helping our clients reimagine the world of real estate. Through this, we hope to create rewarding opportunities and innovative spaces in cities where people can achieve their ambitions.”
JLL has spent over a year researching the sport, understanding each athlete’s history, environment and personal challenges to create individualised development plans. The athletes were then brought to an intensive training camp in Japan to train with a world-class coach Ian Dunn for one week.
The real estate consultancy has also partnered with experiential agency MKTG to develop the campaign and create a motion-capture climbing suit supported by digital agency Isobar. It uses advanced sensor fusion technology to analyse a climber’s movements and turn this into kinematic data. With the ability to capture and visualise data into a video replay, the collaborative training platform provides new insights to an athlete’s performance by reviewing their posture, rhythm, techniques, speed and endurance.
Ms Worthington adds, “We believe that technology can deliver huge competitive advantages – in real estate as well as in sport. As a company, we are inspired to make smarter decisions and deliver better services to our clients with tech-enabled tools. Likewise, we can help athletes better understand their strengths and weaknesses as well as identify marginal gains with this cutting-edge technology to push them to the next level.”
Siddhi Manerikar, one of JLL’s sponsored athletes, explains, “To compete at an elite level, we need proper infrastructure in our cities. In Mumbai, there are only two climbing walls and no speed walls, so I have to travel to another city like Pune to practise. With JLL’s support, I can now say that I am one step closer to achieving my ambitions.”
To bring this campaign to life, JLL has created a nine-part documentary series in a partnership with National Geographic, depicting the back story of each athlete in their own city, as well as their struggles and ambitions on their way to the top.
Ms Worthington concludes: “We’re looking beyond the traditional sports sponsorship model to inspire our employees and clients, and engage with the communities in which we operate. In Singapore, we’ve worked with Onsight Climbing Gym to put up its first 15-metre speed climbing wall with an auto-belay system, to allow the broader community to be a part of this excitement. In the coming months, we’ll be creating further opportunities to experience this unique sport in cities around Asia Pacific, so look out for more lively activations in the region.”