Major new international sponsor
Sydney Festival’s first major international sponsorship was announced by NSW Premier and Minister for Western Sydney, The Hon. Barry O’Farrell, in Guangzhou today, with China Southern Airlines joining Sydney Festival as a Leadership Partner.
China Southern will be the Official Airline for Sydney Festival 2012 and will co-sponsor The Domain Concert Series, featuring the free outdoor concerts Summer Sounds and Symphony in The Domain, alongside co-sponsor ANZ. The Airline’s other associations include the Ferrython on Sydney Harbour on Australia Day.
Mr O’Farrell said he was delighted with the agreement, “This is the most significant international sponsorship ever obtained by Sydney Festival and the first by a Chinese company.
“It’s immensely exciting that one of the world’s fastest growing tourism markets will have front row access to Australia’s most vibrant summer festival.
“The $600,000 sponsorship recognises the unrivalled attraction of Sydney to China’s travellers as a ‘City of Infinite Choices’ – from our beaches and natural environment, to great food and wine, iconic attractions, fashion, events and a great lifestyle.” Mr O’Farrell said.
Based in Guangzhou, China Southern is Asia’s largest airline, flying to more than 916 destinations and 169 countries worldwide cooperating with Sky Team Alliance. It is China’s largest airline flying in and out of Australia, operating 24 weekly services including two daily flights to Sydney, daily to Melbourne, and three services a week to Brisbane. With all Australian flights going direct into Guangzhou’s award-winning Baiyun International Airport, China Southern offers Australian residents a convenient first-class gateway to China and transit point to the world.
Josephine Ridge, Executive Director of Sydney Festival said, “Sydney Festival looks forward to working with China Southern to further build ties between our two sister cities, Guangzhou and Sydney. The sponsorship also supports Sydney Festival’s focus on further developing its international reputation specifically within the Asia/Pacific region as an exciting reason to visit Sydney, the nation’s cultural and entertainment capital.”
Mr Tan Wan’geng, EVP of China Southern Holding Company, President & CEO of China Southern Airlines, said it was a fantastic opportunity for the Airlines to help Sydney Festival build greater cultural and tourism links between China and NSW.
“Our new campaign aims to increase visitors to the State between October this year and March next year, including the time of Sydney Festival and Chinese New Year. We look forward to speaking directly to the Premier Barry O’Farrell about these new steps forward in our relationship with NSW when he meets representatives of China Southern Airlines in Guangzhou on Thursday,” Mr Tan said.
Around 650,000 people enjoyed the 2011 Sydney Festival, which included 109 events with 338 performances and17 free events throughout the city, and contributed $50.2m to the NSW economy.