The future of UCI professional women’s cycling Team EF Education-TIBCO-SVB is uncertain after title sponsor implodes.
Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) has for decades been the biggest sponsor and supporter of pro and amateur women’s cycling in North America, but on Friday the bank was taken over by the US Government when panicked depositors withdrew USD $42 billion and SVB failed to raise enough new capital to cover liabilities.
Unannounced, federal regulators, US Marshals and Treasury officials marched into the bank’s headquarters in Santa Clara, California and took control of over $200 billion in assets, while customers and employees were locked out. Financial markets worldwide were jolted by the bank’s sudden failure, the second largest in US history.
“SVB’s condition deteriorated so quickly that it couldn’t last just five more hours,” wrote Better Markets CEO Dennis M. Kelleher. “That’s because its depositors were withdrawing their money so fast that the bank was insolvent, and an intraday closure was unavoidable due to a classic bank run.”
SVB is a title sponsor of UCI professional women’s cycling Team EF Education-TIBCO-SVB with a roster of 15 top riders, including multiple Junior World Champion Zoe Bäckstedt, US National Road Champion Lauren Stephens and three times US National Cyclocross Champion Clara Honsinger. The team competed in the 2022 Tour de France Femmes, finishing third overall.
While SVB customers with federally guaranteed bank deposits will have their money returned, creditors like Team EF Education-TIBCO-SVB, who are owed sponsorship funds from SVB, will likely not be paid going forward, at least not for a long time and then only a fraction of what they are owed. In the meantime, replacing a major sponsor on short notice will be difficult given current worldwide financial headwinds and recessionary forces.
The team has not issued an official statement on the collapse of SVB.
Overall, this leaves many unanswered questioned and a lot of uncertainty for riders and staff at Team EF Education-TIBCO-SVB as they start the 2023 racing season.
Photo Credit: Team EF Education-TIBCO-SVB, MediaNewsGroup
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