INDIANAPOLIS, April 7. WITH six months remaining before the Opening Ceremonies of the 7th FINA Short Course World Swimming Championships, which take place Oct. 7-11 at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, support for the event is growing through corporate involvement.
More than 20 companies have made either cash or value-in-kind commitments to the first FINA World Swimming Championships ever to take place in the United States.
Sports Publications International (SPI) — publishers of SwimInfo.com, Swimming World, SWIM Magazine, and Swimming Technique — is serving as Official Media Publication Partner. "This will be the first major swimming event after the Athens Olympics. The fact that people in the United States can see these athletes up close and in person is exciting. More importantly, it will be the first time that a competition will be staged using a temporary, above ground, high-performance, racing pool placed in the middle of an indoor sports arena. We are extremely excited to be able to help showcase Olympic athletes in this venue." commented Brent Rutemiller, CEO SPI.
"We are enthused about the support for what will be a unique and extraordinary event," said Mike Murphy, Organizing Committee vice chairman for marketing and ticket sales. "Our corporate partners have expressed great enthusiasm for the Championships. Initial corporate support is solid and discussions with companies throughout Indiana continue."
The international governing body, FINA, has signed Argent Mortgage and Omega as event sponsors. Top-level local event sponsors thus far are Eli Lilly and Company Foundation; OneAmerica Financial Partners, Inc./AUL; Veolia Water Indianapolis LLC (previously US Filter) and Anthem.
A number of additional local corporate executives have pledged their support of the World Championships through the purchase of an "H2CEO" package. They include Cinergy (Cinergy Foundation President Joe Hale), Indianapolis Motor Speedway (President and CEO Tony George), Irving Materials (President Pete Irving), Monarch Beverage (President Phil Terry), the National Collegiate Athletic Association (President Myles Brand), REI Investments (President Mike Wells), and The Sallie Mae Fund (Executive Vice President June McCormack). This package offers companies special hospitality and employee recognition benefits, as well as an opportunity to include employees as volunteers with the event.
"These corporate leaders are to be commended and are indicative of the broad-based community support the World Championships are certain to have," said Murphy.
Other companies have found the World Swimming Championships provide an opportunity to play a specific role. St. Vincent Health, for example, is the leading sponsor of the 15th FINA World Sports Medicine Congress, which takes place on Oct. 12-13 following the Championships.
American Family Insurance, the Brigham Family Trust and Ronald McDonald House Charities, meanwhile, are lending their financial support to a number of youth initiatives that will be part of the event.
Another group of companies is providing value-in-kind contributions, including Indianapolis-based printer Sport Graphics. Bud Sports will support the worldwide telecast of the Championships.
Other VIK supporters include Crowne Plaza Hotel, Downtown Park & Ride, Gatorade, Indianapolis Fruit, Markey's Audio-Visual, Motorola, Nextel and Omni Severin Hotel.
The Organizing Committee also has support and assistance from United States Aquatic Sports, USA Swimming, Indiana Sports Corporation, Pacers Sports & Entertainment, Inc., American Swimming Coaches Association, American College of Sports Medicine, Indiana Swimming and the International Center of Indianapolis in order to make the event a success its first time in the United States.
More than 600 swimmers from more than 120 countries are expected to compete in the FINA World Swimming Championships. Two temporary pools holding 500,000 gallons of water will be constructed on the floor of Conseco Fieldhouse.
For sponsorship or other information, log on to worldswim2004.com or contact Indiana Sports Corporation at 317-237-5000.