Yes, itís expensive to climb the tallest of them
all. A large piece of the cost is the permit fee: US 10.000 from the
South side (normal route).
Add to that the costs for sherpas, gear, transportations, oxygen and
A low budget expedition will still require a good US 25.000 of you.
Some climbers save up and pay the lot by themselves. Most climbers try
to find sponsorship for parts of- (or better yet) the total cost.
"The first in the world
climb the mountain is sometimes nothing compared to what climbers are
facing in order to find financing for their dream. If you are a first of
some kind, it will be easier since your sponsors can expect media.
That's why we so often witness record attempts of all kinds on
Everest. Spanning over everything from being the first from your country
to summit, to climbing the mountain blindfolded and backwards - or
whatever it takes to get the money (and/or fame).
way is to make a film for a production company.
The trouble is that film-making requires skill, quite large costs are
involved and it takes tremendous effort to roll a camera while
In addition, climbing films - much like other documentaries - doesnít
sell easily. Better then is to get a contract with a broadcast network
before the climb. They can cover the climb while itīs ongoing and
produce a film after the expedition. This is of value to money sponsors
in terms of airtime.
Even better is to build a certain image for a
company, brand or line of products. The adventure and dangers of alpine
climbing are fascinating and attractive.
Everest really changed peoples outlook on us (much to our own surprise
actually) and could do just the same for products and/or "sleeping"
Join a corporate family
Yet another way - and our favorite - is to
"join a company" and make your climb a part of its happenings (fairs,
promotions, sales pushes and the like). To attend an expedition, even if
arm-chair only, can really boost the performance of the employees in the
duration of the adventure. It brakes the routine bore, the staff gets
into the fight and perform better themselves in the going.
wild adventure with the companyís name attached to it brings the staff
closer together, promoting a feeling of pushing a joint aim. This
feeling is otherwise hard to create, since it requires stepping outside
the usual work environment and face something completely different.
Thus, the expedition helps the staff to view their usual problems
with new approaches. Also, the workers realize that theyíre not so bad
of after all Ė compared to that sucker in the pitch-black tent with his
beard frozen to his teeth - YOU are doing much worse!
Large companies spend a whole deal of funds on staff motivations.
Your expedition wonít even cut a major part of that budget.
You need to prepare your case, pick up the
phone and call everyone. Donít get discouraged by a hundred Noís and
donít give up until you find a company thatís in the market for you.
Focus on what you could do for them, check their homepages, and talk to
their people about upcoming happenings. Figure out a way that your
expedition could be valuable to them in return for financing.
Combine one, two or all of the above stated sponsor give backs
There are not so many of us doing these things out there (even
if you are likely to get the impression in your initial approaches) - so
you DO have value! Just keep changing your strategies - never the goal -
and donít give up. This is the same approach that you will need later
for your climb anyway, so start to get used to it!
The last and most important part is to give back
to your sponsors. Underpromise and overdeliver. Too many failed
expeditions also fail their sponsors.
Return gear for lend fast and neat, prepare some speeches, take nice
sponsor pictures. It is not necessarily a fact that your sponsor will
consider the expedition a failure just because you didnít make the
summit . And on the other end - making the summit doesnít allow sponsor
Be loyal, donít double play with competing brands, build a good and
lasting reputation. Being a good guy pays in the long run - just as in
If everything fails...
Finally, should you fail to get the funds
(and that happens to the best, so donít eat yourself) you could shoot
some sponsor pictures anyway. Sell them after the expedition to return
some of your own investments, savings and/or loans.
The sponsor will experience a serious emotional impact upon viewing
the companyís logos and products on Everest summit. If you couldnít sell
them the dream, you might very well be able to sell them the fact!