Belkin Pro Cycling has announced that its title sponsor, the American consumer electronics company Belkin, has decided not to renew its sponsorship of the team beyond 2014.
Having entered into sponsorship with the team prior to the 2013 Tour de France with the aim of increasing brand awareness and subsequently sales, a change in company strategy to a global focus on Belkin International brands — Belkin, WeMo and Linksys — means the Dutch team will begin to immediately look for a new title sponsor.
"It is unfortunate that this new collaboration is not going to be extended," Richard Plugge, managing director of the Belkin Pro Cycling team announced the changes on the team website. "With the motto #ridethefuture we have generated a lot of goodwill the past year, in an environment that is still critically observed. Our innovative method and forward-looking TEAM philosophy has brought the sport back where it belongs, with fans and stakeholders. Our performance, battle mode, transparency and accessibility have not gone unnoticed by the public and industry.
"We will now start an intensive search for a new sponsor to be able to continue the journey that we started. We have full confidence in the future and expect to appear with a new sponsor on the shirt at the start of the 2015 season," Plugge said.
"We are a Dutch procycling team with an international image and World Tour status, therefore we expect to find a new title sponsor. We were already in conversation with additional sponsors and still have sponsorship opportunities open for the upcoming Tour de France."
Belkin also issued a statement, saying that their marketing strategy would be focussed more on innovation, but said they will help the team in their search for a new sponsor.
"Belkin would like to thank and pay tribute to the cycling community for the warm welcome and the support that has been extended to our brand over the last 12 months. Belkin will always have the highest of regards for the team and will actively support them throughout the remainder of the season in their search for a new sponsor," a company statement said.
More to come...