Official Sponsor gives unemployed South Africans a special opportunity:

09/03/2009 Continental AG is financing year-long training program and employs 26 South Africans during the 2010 FIFA World CupTM

Tourism school's 7-month course will train a total of 26 young men and women as tourist guides and office assistants.

Hanover, September 2009. Just under a year before the start of the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ in South Africa, Continental AG has initiated a special on-location training program. In collaboration with the successful "Energy Guides" tourism school in Johannesburg, Continental will train13 young women and 13 young men - all previously unemployed and from in and around Soweto - for their later positions as part of Continental's hospitality and back office team from July 2009 to January 2010. The international automotive supplier is one of the main sponsors of the 2010 FIFA World Cup™. More than 200 people applied to take part in the training program..

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"We want to give these 26 highly-motivated South Africans the opportunity to acquire new career prospects through our qualification program. We know from experience that we will have lots to do during the World Cup in order to make sure that our guests from all around the world have an unforgettable stay in South Africa. It therefore made sense to look for a team from the Johannesburg region, since locals are sure to be able to awaken visitors' enthusiasm for the special features of South Africa more easily than a team from Europe," explains Heinz-Gerhard Wente, Executive Board member responsible for human resources at Continental.

Johannesburg: A view on the centre of South Africa’s largest city. (Photo: GES/Augenklick)

The training program consists of a detailed look at the tourism industry, customer services, comprehensive application knowledge, geography modules, teamwork, and social and ethical values. In addition, the program is rounded off by special English classes and information on FIFA, the 2010 FIFA World Cup™, and the aims of the Continental Corporation’s communication and sponsoring activities. Once the course has finished, all 26 participants will spend three months gaining practical experience in well-respected companies within the tourism industry before beginning final preparations and training for the active phase of the Continental hospitality program in May. Assuming that the project is concluded successfully, the aim and goal of all concerned is for the graduates of the program to continue their employment following the World Cup.

Soccer City, Johannesburg: A top-class stadium for 94,700 spectators, the pride of South African football, is being constructed on the edge of Soweto. (Photo: GES/Augenklick)

Since 1995, Continental AG has consistently concentrated on international football sponsoring for market communication purposes and has already gathered extensive experience in implementing hospitality programs through being the official partner/sponsor of the UEFA Champions League (1995 to 2000), 2006 FIFA World Cup (2003 to 2006), and UEFA EURO 2008 (2006 to 2008). As was the case for the previous tournaments, for the FIFA World Cup in South Africa Continental has developed an individual hospitality program that takes into account local features and conditions. The central Continental project team for the implementation of football sponsoring in the run-up to South Africa consists of ten employees and is supported by the Swiss agency Interface Marketing, which specializes in sponsorship activation.

Continental's Passenger & Light Truck Tires division is the market leader in Europe and South Africa. In Port Elizabeth, South Africa, Continental operates a factory for passenger tires where a total workforce of 1600 employees produced around 2.9 million tires in 2009. Its tires are sold both to OE manufacturers and to the replacement sector. Moreover, Continental has a factory for commercial vehicle tires, also in Port Elizabeth, which meets demand south of the Sahara and thus in the country hosting the 2010 FIFA World Cup™.

With sales exceeding 24 billion in 2008, the Continental Corporation is one of the top automotive suppliers worldwide. As a supplier of tires, brake systems, systems and components for the powertrain and chassis, instrumentation, infotainment solutions, vehicle electronics and technical elastomers, the corporation contributes towards enhanced driving safety and protection of the global climate. Continental is also a competent partner in networked automobile communication. The corporation currently employs approximately 130,000 at nearly 190 locations in 35 countries.

Continental is the market leader in Europe for passenger and light truck tires. More than 30 percent of all new European cars leave the factory fitted with Continental tires. The tire divisions are an Official Sponsor of the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™. For further details, please go to

Alexander Lührs
Head of Media & Public Relations
Passenger & Light Truck Tires Division
Continental AG I Rubber Group
Continental Reifen Deutschland GmbH
Büttnerstr. 25
D-30165 Hanover, Germany
Phone: +49 (0) 511 / 938 26 15
Fax: +49 (0) 511 / 938 24 62
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