Focus on Sponsorship: Volkswagen and the Singapore Swimming Association


Mr Richard Seow
Mr Richard Seow, Chairman of Sport Singapore with Volkswagen Singapore Managing Director, Mr. Steffen Schwarz.

The Starting Line (TSL) crosses the boardroom table to speak to Volkswagen Singapore Managing Director, Mr. Steffen Schwarz about sponsorship and the 2nd TYR SEA Swimming Championships.

What was Volkswagen Singapore’s rationale behind its commitment in becoming a sponsor of sports in Singapore and in particular swimming?

Volkswagen has always been a strong supporter of sports globally and we are pleased and excited that we can extend this commitment to Singapore’s sporting scene as well.

To Volkswagen Singapore, the Singapore Swimming Association (SSA) is a trustworthy and respectable National Sports Association that has built much credence in the local swimming fraternity.   Given this, together with SSA, Volkswagen Singapore would like to take the plunge and be actively involved with Singaporeans in the field of swimming.  

An automobile is not the first product that comes to mind when one thinks of swimming  – what is needed to draw the two together?

Volkswagen Singapore was the Official Car Partner of  the Singapore’s leg of FINA/Arena Swimming World Cup  last year and we are very happy that the event has helped enhance Volkswagen’s brand image. 

National Swimming Team and VW Product
National Swimming Team and VW Product.

How important are the synchronicity of values between a sponsor and the sport and the association that governs the sport? What are Volkswagen Singapore’s values?

We see SSA as a trailblazer in its own right, taking the lead in the field of competitive swimming with its presence much felt within the swimming fraternity and the larger Singapore community.   Likewise, Volkswagen leads the way in quality and innovation within the automotive industry.

As there are likely to have been many, what were 2 to3 key highlights or anecdotes that come to mind with regard to Volkswagen Singapore’s sponsorship of the recent TYR 2nd SEA Swimming Championships held at the newly opened OCBC Aquatic Centre?

Volkswagen Singapore is privileged to be part of history, to be part of the first event to be held at the new OCBC Aquatic Centre.  It was a positive experience being able to partner SSA and to network with other key sponsors including TYR and Yakult.  And it was heartening to note that SSA had a wonderful experience with our fleet of cars and to be welcomed as a member of their extended family by their staff and athletes.

What are your views on sport and the Singapore Sport scene?

Sport is a corporate priority of Volkswagen Singapore and recently, we started a running interest group for staff.  We also organise fitness classes such as Zumba to encourage staff to bond through sport.

Personally, I have always enjoyed doing sports – from swimming to skiing. And like many others, I get excited whenever world class football players or football legends visit Singapore.  That being said, I am interested to see how Volkswagen Singapore can be part of this in the future.

I am also impressed with the facilities at the Singapore Sports Hub  and feel privileged that Volkswagen Singapore is given the opportunity to begin an enduring relationship with this iconic sport centre through our sponsorship arrangement with SSA.

James Page General Manager of Volkswagen
James Page General Manager of Volkswagen.

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