HTC signs on as Columbia co-sponsor

Cell phone maker commits to three year deal

For the second consecutive year, Bob Stapleton's team will change its name and alter its kit ahead of the Tour de France after signing a new sponsor ahead of the race.  The American team signed a deal with cell phone maker HTC as a headline sponsor for three years, and will now drop "Highroad" from the title and become simply Columbia-HTC.

Last year, the team changed from Team High Road to Columbia-Highroad after it signed Columbia Sportswear as its title sponsor.

Team owner Bob Stapleton, who made his fortune in the cell phone industry, explained that the team will present the new kits with the HTC logo on July 3, the day before they start the Tour de France in Monaco.

“You will see a green accent representing HTC added to the existing yellow and white colour scheme of the current jersey,” said Stapleton.

The three-year sponsorship agreement runs through 2011 and includes both the men's and women's teams, both of which are top ranked worldwide and have won over 80 races combined in 2009.

"Team Columbia-HTC is now sponsored by two leading companies in their [respective] industries and we are ready to show the growing power of our partnership at this year's Tour de France," he added.

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