The adventure began in 2010, when the Swiss entrepreneur Marco Simeoni founded Race for Water, which supports scientific research on the ecological balance of the deep ocean. After an initial expedition in 2015, the foundation launched a new five-year world tour in 2017 where the main objective is to save the oceans from the threat of plastic pollution and raise public awareness. The odyssey set off from Brittany in April 2017 on board a groundbreaking boat that is powered solely by renewable energy. It arrived in Asia after crossing the Atlantic and Pacific oceans over the course of two years including stopping in around 20 cities. The boat and its crew intend to reach Shanghai at the beginning of 2020, after their long stay in Hong Kong.
The watchmaker and the foundation have a great deal more in common than their shared passion for the sea. Both entities are committed to saving the planet. When asked why Breguet chose Race for Water over another foundation, Breguet, replied that what sets Race for Water apart is its global scope and realistic approach. What makes the foundation unique is its outreach, and the proactive work with young people in particular. It has a strong educational aspect, and the scientific component is also vital. Collecting waste is great, but repurposing it and transforming it into clean energy is even better. This is the ambition behind this project. In 2020, Race for Water will set sail for Shanghai before Japan, and Tokyo in particular, where it will then remain throughout July. The timing was deliberately chosen because it coincides with the Summer Olympic Games. This will be their longest stopover.