Interesting. I was reading my latest Velonews on the plane last night. In it, there is an interview with iShares CEO Lee Kranefuss. Lee says that doping scandals, including Tyler Hamilton’s suspension, is not a deal breaker. Lee goes on to say that people move on quickly from doping scandals looking towards the next race, the next Tour de France.
It seems that Lee was not talking about iShares. It looks as though iShares has dropped its commitment to pick up title sponsorship from Phonak. iShares reportedly is looking for another sport, like golf, to reach its clients. Cyclingnews is reporting that Phonak is in critical condition after losing iShares.
After iShares withdrew, Rihs worked feverishly to find a new sponsor in order to save the jobs of the riders and other employees of the ARcycling AG, but without success. Rihs has scheduled a press conference next Tuesday morning to make a formal announcement on Phonak’s future.
Phonak has survived many hits, this one may be the knockout blow.