With the last leg now under way before the grand finale of the Volvo Ocean Race in Galway, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD, joined Tourism Ireland in the penultimate stopover port of Lorient (France) yesterday, at a reception for key French and international media contacts. The event, which took place in the Volvo Ocean Race Village in Lorient, was an excellent opportunity to showcase Galway and Ireland as a fantastic holiday destination – as part of Tourism Ireland’s publicity drive around the world during the race to reach a huge audience of potential holidaymakers.
The Volvo Ocean Race is the third largest sport event globally in 2012, attracting huge publicity around the world – with an estimated two billion people around the globe seeing it on TV, reading about it and tuning in to hear about it on the radio. Since the race kicked off last November in Alicante (Spain), Tourism Ireland has been working in key markets where the race stopped, to ensure Galway and Ireland were in the spotlight.
Billy Condon, Tourism Ireland’s manager for southern Europe, said: "The Volvo Ocean Race attracts huge publicity around the world and with Galway set to host the grand finale this week, the stopover here in Lorient was an ideal opportunity to showcase Galway and the west to the international media in attendance, drawing positive attention and publicity for the destination. The event is a great ‘hook’ for Tourism Ireland to reach a huge audience of potential French and other international holidaymakers.”
The 2009 stopover of the Volvo Ocean Race in Galway brought 40,500 international visitors to the city, as well as 269 journalists from around the world.
Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD (back, fourth left) with members of Team Sanya in Lorient. Also pictured is HE Paul Kavanagh, Irish Ambassador to France (back, second left); Billy Condon, Tourism Ireland; Norbert Metairie, Mayor of Lorient; and Cllr Terry O’Flaherty, Mayor of Galway. city.
Further media information:
Sinéad Grace, Tourism Ireland
Notes to the editor
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is the island of Ireland’s largest indigenous industry; responsible for in excess of 4% of GNP in the Republic of Ireland and employing approximately 200,000 people.
• In 2011, approximately 7.3 million overseas visitors came to the island of Ireland (+4% on 2010), delivering revenue of approximately €3.4 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.discoverireland.com; there are 42 different websites, providing information in 14 different languages covering every continent. In 2011, discoverireland.com attracted almost 12 million unique visitors.