US-based Continental team Kelly Benefit Strategies has bolstered its green-clad jersey with three new sponsors Schick, Banana Boat and Energizer - all brands of the Energizer Asia Pacific Division.
"I met with Schick about two and half years ago," said the team's Managing Director, Charles Aaron. "We originally wanted to elaborate and use them as a role for a potential women's side of the team. An opportunity came together for 2010. I'm fond of the people at Schick, they have a vision and they want to stay to it."
"It was something we worked hard at over late night conversations and we are happy to have these people on board," he continued. "To be the platform they want to use in the south-east Asia and Asia market place."
Schick, a widely known razor blade brand first sponsored the Target Training Women's Professional Cycling Team in 2007. The east-coast women's team disbanded one year later and owner Greg Wolf put the company's brand manager in contact with Aaron for a potential sponsorship.
"During economic struggle, companies look at strategic ways to save money," Aaron said. "This brings us a strategic sponsor and a brand presence to a level we can grow our program in the toughest economy since the great depression. We have goals and objectives for our sponsors in KBS and Schick. We like to call them partners. We want to meet their goals and they see us as a good platform for their brands."
Kelly Benefit Strategies will return to defend its title in this year's Tour of Thailand. It will continue to have a strong presence in the Asian market at races in Singapore and China. The team will also target the Vuelta Ciclista del Uruguay.
Races in the US will include the US Pro Championships, the Philadelphia International Cycling Championships and the Tour of California, should it receive an invitation. The team will also focus on east coast races where title sponsor Kelly Benefit Strategies has a strong market.
Kelly Benefit Strategies, the direct sales and consulting division of Kelly & Associates Insurance Group, Inc. will continue to hold the title position on the team jersey. "We are fortunate that people saw value in what we do," Aaron said. "They keep the sport going and get the return on investment they were expecting."
The 2010 team roster includes Ryan Anderson, Jesse Anthony, Andrew Bajadali, Zach Bell, Dan Bowman, Alex Boyd, Alex Candelario, Guy East, Mark Hinnen, Cheyne Hoag, Ian Macgregor, Reid Mumford, Neil Shirley, David Veilleux and Scott Zwizanski.