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RS:X IP Rights transfered from NeilPryde to the RS:X Class

by The International RS:X Class Association 23 Jun 11:06 BST
Left- Romain Ghio (FRA), Right- Antonio Cozzolino (NZL) - 2020 RS:X Windsurfing World Championships, day 3 © Caitlin Baxter

NeilPryde Ltd. transfers the RS:X IP (Intellectual Property) to the International RS:X Windsurfing Class Association.

During the worldwide Covid-19 lockdown, the RS:X Class Association has continued to work in the background in supporting its sailors and MNA's with a range of issues and concerns.

The primary concern raised has been about the supply of equipment for those sailors looking to Tokyo 2020 (to be held on 2021) who will need to train on fresh equipment as well as continuing their equipment selection processes. Alongside this, NeilPryde Ltd. who have been overseen the production of the RS:X for 4 Olympic cycles, has been looking to move away from the single manufacturer option to a more open market for manufacturers. This reflects the anti-trust concerns that have dominated discussions at World Sailing over the past two years.

As such NeilPryde feel that now is the right time to transfer the IP of the RS:X to the Class Association and allow a process for multiple manufacturers to exist, appointed by the Class, provided that the consistency, quality and supply is maintained. This transfer of IP gives the Class and its sailors control over who is building their equipment. Whatever the future holds for the Class, this set up will be able to adapt to changing circumstances.

Under the arrangement, manufacturing will continue at the existing suppliers of boards, masts, sails and booms. The appointed manufacturers will now supply product directly to distributors, at the same time as becoming directly accountable for product quality. NeilPryde Ltd. will remain a part of this manufacturing group, responsible for the production of the sails in its China factory, where it specialises in the high quality, tightly consistent production of sails for other Olympic and Youth One Design Classes. Athletes will be able to continue to buy equipment from their local distributor, and will benefit from an 8% average drop in the retail prices.

The RS:X Class have also been looking at the next 12 months and beyond as the postponement of the Tokyo Olympic Games also offers up some different opportunities. The Class is keeping a close eye on its events in line with the whole sailing calendar to ensure that when events start to happen again, the overlap is reduced to ensure that conflicts are minimalised. As more RS:X sailors start to receive their iQFoil equipment, making sure that RS:X events represent value for money is important to the Class.

The RS:X Class have also been invited to put forward an equipment bid by World Sailing for the 2022 Youth Olympic Games, due to be held in Senegal. The Class are considering this alongside the wider windsurfing community to ensure the best equipment for the sport as a whole is put forward.

Finally, the RS:X Class Association hopes that its sailors, coaches and supporters, wherever they are in the world are safe and well and that we will see you on the water as soon as possible.

For more information visit www.rsxclass.org.

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