In a page straight out of the next Pirates of the Caribbean-script, a world-famous promotional campaign involving a 26 feet long message-in-a-bottle, has been robbed by aquatic pirates somewhere east of Barbados.
Solo, a Norwegian soft drink company, released the 2.5 tons replica soda bottle outfitted with solar panels, a camera, and tracking technology to the ocean currents of Tenerife back in March. Or actually, Miss Tenerife did it. Some 145 days later they lost satellite connection with the bottle and the gps-tracking stopped working. After a series of articles and news segments on the lost bottle in the caribbean media, but to no avail, the future of the project looked dark.
– We had almost given up hope when our social media-guy checked the hashtag #solobottle on instagram yesterday and found that a local venezuelan photographer, Arjuna Maciel Camargo (@arjunamac), had posted photos of the local coast guard towing a yellow giant bottle. We were so thrilled! Apparently the Venezuelan Coast Guard had found the bottle drifting in the Los Roques archipelago 100 miles north of the Venezuelan mainland on yesterday morning.
But upon examining the pictures, the Solo team discovered that there were things missing.
– Gone was the custom-made camera that took 360 degree images every eight hours, the satellite antenna, and there was a big hole in the bottle. After consulting with the coast guard, we were informed that the bottle was totally empty. And I am obviously not surprised that the pirates didn’t just take the 600 kilos of batteries and the computers, they had also finished off the case of 24 delicious Solo bottles that were inside.
Will throw party
On Solo.no more than 100,000 Norwegians have guessed where the message-in-a-bottle would end up – and nearly half a million people from almost every country in the world have followed the journey. Now Solo are working on establishing exactly where the bottle was found to announce a winner of the competition, a winner that will bag close to 4000 bottles of Solo – one bottle for every nautical mile it has drifted.
Adding to that, Joakim Sande and his team will in the near future fly to Venezuela and throw a proper Solo-party for the Coast Guard and the 1500 local inhabitants in Los Roques, Venezuela.