Technology giant Dyson has been unveiled as Bath Rugbyâs new title partner.
The Wiltshire-based company, which specialises in the design and manufacture of vacuum cleaners, will be the clubâs principle sponsor for the next two seasons, replacing wealth management firm Novia.
The agreement, announced on Thursday, will see two of the cityâs most famous brands join forces, with the corporationâs name emblazoned on the clubâs kit.
Inventor and owner Sir James Dyson developed his first ideas in Bath and is the wealthiest man in the South West, according to The Sunday Times Rich List 2014, with his fortune stable at Â£3 billion this year.
The partnership is the first of its kind for Dyson and Bath owner and chairman Bruce Craig was delighted to have secured such a significant backer.
âItâs a local company but also a worldwide brand and thatâs a big evolution for Bath Rugby,â explained Craig.
âWhat Dyson as an organisation does, looking for those marginal gains, is what we do on a daily and weekly basis in training. The players, coaches and everyone put all their effort into looking to become the best team.
âThe fact that Jamesâ company is in Malmesbury, where there are a significant number of people employed from the area who are Bath supporters, makes it a great marriage between two organisations with a joint vision of pushing the boundaries of innovation and trying to be the best.â
Sir James was a frequent guest of Craig at matches at The Rec last season and when the pair announced the link-up at Farleigh House earlier this week it became clear that their relationship is built on more than just a mutually strong-minded business sense.
Expect Bath to probe Dyson on technological developments to give them the edge on the rugby field. A delegation from the club will doubtless make trips in the opposite direction to the proposed sports centre which is part of the expansion of Dyson headquarters.
As part of the scheme, next seasonâs strip will see different Dyson technologies partnered with player positions.
The front-row will wear Dyson digital slim shirts, the second-row will be Dyson Animal, back-row will be Dyson on a ball, half-backs and full-backs will wear Dyson hot + cool, while the speedsters in the centre and on the wings will wear Dyson 110,000rpm.
Craig and Sir James even joked of designing vanishing stadium, a reference to Bathâs ongoing problems of redeveloping their home at The Rec.
âJames has been a rugby supporter for many years,â said Craig.
âHeâs been involved with Bath Rugby as a supporter and season ticket holder, and over the last couple of years weâve become quietly friendly and watched several games together.
âThat relationship has evolved and I think the two organisations both share a culture of high performance and pursuit of excellence.â
Sir James added: âItâs not a sponsorship in a normal sense. We donât do name branding, we always talk about our engineering.
âThatâs exactly what we are doing with the shirts, weâd have a bit of fun talking about our technology.
âWeâve not done it for commercial game at all weâve done it because we want to support something locally. Weâve tried various things in Bath and a lot of them havenât come off.
âBruce Craig and his family, armed with his infectious enthusiasm and tactical skill, are transforming the club.
âIt has been a joy and inspiration to witness Bath Rugbyâs rapid regeneration and see the clubâs ambitious expansion plans first-hand.
âWe are backing a world class team that shares Dysonâs faith in nurturing youth and have fighting spirit in abundance.â
Dyson unveiled as Bath Rugby"s new title partner