It seems like the U.S. ski-and-snowboard team can’t get any sponsorship love. Despite a team record of Olympic medal wins at the 2010 Games, revenue was down by 45 percent in total sponsorship.
Officials from the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA) met last month to take action before the lack of sponsors began to affect the team’s performance.
The U.S. Winter Olympics team is packed with the best of the best in the sport including stars like Shaun White, Hannah Kearney, Johnny Spillane, Lindsey Vonn, Bode Miller, and Julia Mancuso. The goal is to keep the team training and in shape so they can bring home the gold for the 2014 and 2018 Games. Athlete travel, coaches’ salaries, and athlete training costs money and, without sponsorship investments, could take years to pay off. So how bad is it really? In 2002 the team was receiving 56 percent sponsorship, but for 2010 the team only sees 28 percent revenue.
Newly appointed chief revenue officer, Andrew Judelson praised the ski and snowboard team for their success at the Vancouver Games, bringing home 21 of the 37 U.S. medals. His hope is to engage fans in the years between the Olympics, to build brand-name athletes, and to expand access to coverage of the team’s World Cup performances.