Thursday, May 25, 2006

Title Sponsor Drops Liberty Seguros Cycling Team

One has to think that the marketing folks at Liberty Mutual and their Spanish branch, Liberty Seguros, are anticipating the weekend more than anyone else. They've had one tough week; I don't envy their marketing decision makers at all.

Liberty Seguros is the title sponsor of one of the top pro cycling teams in Europe. With Alexander Vinokourov on the team they were a contender for a top spot at Le Tour de France this July. However, yesterday their team director was arrested as part of a blood doping investigation. This has, undoubtedly, shaken the team (which is currently participating in the Giro d'Italia). However, today the title sponsor has ceased their sponsorship effective immediately. This is a huge blow to the team on many levels.

It is also a huge blow to the folks at Liberty. Procycling.com reports that the Boston, Massachusetts-based insurance company made its decision based on a zero tolerance policy towards doping.

Imagine what it was like at Liberty Mutual/Liberty Seguros yesterday and today. This was a very tough decision they had to make. I'm sure they had internal and external advertising and marketing campaigns all lined up and ready to go for the team's involvement in Le Tour de France. All of that has to be scraped now and they need to scramble to find a new direction quickly.

The weekend can not come soon enough for their marketing department. I wish them all a restful weekend because come next week, it's scramble mode.

Just a cycling tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

3 comments:

Tim Jackson- Masi Guy said...

And the riders...

Vino was to leaad a team at the Tour for the first time. Beloki? Davis? Jakche? And the others?

Now they have to scramble to find a new team... if they can get out from under the cloud of suspicion.

Donna Tocci said...

Tim - I know, it's a sad situation all the way around.

Fritz said...

I never even thought about this from the angle that marketing plans are having to get re-done. Wow.