TMF Group brand ambassador, Sir Ranulph Fiennes has just returned from climbing Mount Elbrus, the highest mountain in Europe. He has already successfully summited Mount Everest in Asia (2009) and Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa (2004) as well as reaching both the North and South Poles by crossing the Antarctic continent and the Arctic Ocean.
In a race to secure the record before anyone else, the 72-year old will climb four more mountains in less than a year; Mount Carstensz in New Guinea (Australasia), Mount Vinson in Antarctica, Aconcagua in Argentina (South America), and finally Denali, the highest peak in North America and one of the world’s most dangerous and difficult mountains to climb.
Sir Ranulph outlined his reasons for undertaking the challenge: “In 2009, I was the first person to complete what was then The Grand Slam, which was, and was established in the New York Explorers Club and everywhere else, as being the first person to cross the Arctic Ocean, on the surface of the Arctic Ocean, and the Antarctic Continent, and the highest mountain, Everest – known as the third Pole.”
“However, I then learnt that the goal-posts had been moved by the global adventure community. And now The Grand Slam has been expanded so that it is the Arctic, the Antarctic and, not just Everest, but the highest mountain on all seven continents.”
Along with the goal to achieve the world record, Sir Ranulph is also on a mission to raise funds for Marie Curie, a UK-based charity that provides vital care and support to people living with a terminal illness and their families, across the country.
“Climbing four mountains in a short space of time will definitely be a challenge,” explained Fiennes. “Especially Denali in Alaska, that only had an 18% success rate during this year’s season. However, with local expertise and know-how, I would really like to have a go as this endeavour also raises money for Marie Curie – a very worthwhile cause.”
The Global Reach Challenge is financially sponsored by TMF Group, a leading provider of global business services that specializes in helping companies to expand into new territories and invest across international borders.
Fiennes went on: “Our sponsor is TMF Group who, for any company or even individual who wants to set up in remote areas or expand their company, has the expertise of dealing with local people and local problems to enable companies to set up abroad. So like our sponsor, we need to do everything meticulously in a remote area and that’s what we’re good at.”
Frederik van Tuyll, CEO of TMF Group added: “Sir Ranulph Fiennes is the world’s greatest living explorer. He has inspired many for generations with his perseverance and dedication, and has pushed himself to the extreme to complete some of the world’s most gruelling and difficult challenges.”
“He has shown that to succeed in remote areas requires not only tremendous ambition but also detailed local knowledge and expertise – so he surrounds himself with a strong team, all experts in their field. TMF Group understands this too, and is excited to be part of the Global Reach Challenge team.”