Swiss watchmaker Tissot has completed the set of cycling’s ‘Grand Tours’ by agreeing a sponsorship deal for the Giro d’Italia.
The three-year deal between Tissot and RCS Sport, running from 2020 to 2022, also includes the other Italian races organised by the group – Strade Bianche, Milano-Sanremo, Tirreno-Adriatico, Il Giro di Sicilia, Milano-Torino, Gran Piemonte and Il Lombardia.
Tissot will serve as the official timekeeper of the Giro, a role previously occupied by fellow Swiss brand Tag Heuer, and will mark the partnership by launching the Chrono XL Giro d’Italia 2020, a 45mm diameter chronograph.
François Thiébaud, president of Tissot, said: “This is the first time in the world of cycling that a watchmaking brand has been the worldwide partner of the main cycling events.
“Tissot’s involvement as partner of big sporting events like the Giro means the beauty and technical capacity of our products will be associated with the emotional values encountered in the sport, in relation to both individual and team performance.
“Ensuring precise timekeeping also demonstrates the precision of our watches. With these commitments, Tissot is proud of presenting the time beautifully as well as being a timekeeper.”
Urbano Cairo, president of RCS MediaGroup, added: “Sport, the Giro d’Italia and all cycling are a fundamental asset for our group. We want to grow our events more every year and the partnership with an international brand of Tissot’s stature makes us proud because it means that we are working in the right direction.”
In January 2016, Tissot agreed a sponsorship deal with the Tour de France and other cycling events staged by Amaury Sport Organisation, including fellow Grand Tour the Vuelta a España. Tissot was named the official timekeeper of the Tour for five editions, in a deal that will run until this year’s event.
Tissot has a strong presence in sports sponsorship, in particular cycling. It has partnered with the International Cycling Union (UCI) since 1995, serving as the official timekeeper of the Road, Track, Mountain Bike and BMX World Championships, along with the Track Cycling World Cup.