IRONMAN Strengthens Position as the Global Leader in Endurance Sports with Acquisition of Competitor Group
June 2, 2017
Acquisition of owner of Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon extends IRONMAN’s excellence to athletes across entire endurance life-cycle
TAMPA, Fla./SAN DIEGO, Calif. (June 2, 2017) – IRONMAN, a Wanda Sports Holdings Company, has acquired 100% of Competitor Group Holdings, Inc. (CGI). The combined entity further establishes IRONMAN as the leading Endurance Sports organization in the world.
“This is an important step in the growth IRONMAN has seen over the last decade,” said Andrew Messick, Chief Executive Officer for IRONMAN. “As a globally recognized endurance brand, the acquisition of the world’s largest running platform puts us in an exciting position for the future growth of running worldwide. The ability to help globalize the successful Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series brings about many opportunities to demonstrate our leadership in this industry.”
The acquisition establishes IRONMAN as the largest running event producer in the world. With their more than 30 world-class events including the flagship Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series®, CGI events see over 600,000 athletes each year. IRONMAN already owns or operates more than 20 running races worldwide, including the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon, ASB Auckland Marathon, Marathon Bordeaux and Across the Bay 10k.
“We are committed to providing our athletes with consistent, high-quality experiences across each of our events,” added Messick. “Our distinct expertise in event operations will allow us to ensure that athletes across the entire endurance life cycle are able to achieve their goals at any stage in their endurance journey – from 5K to IRONMAN.”
Combining the CGI portfolio with the strength of IRONMAN’s global capabilities creates a unique business model and a suite of owned intellectual property that is distinctive worldwide. In recent years, IRONMAN has moved into road cycling events including the UCI Velothon Majors Series, mountain bike races such as the Absa Cape Epic, and premier marathons.
“This is a game changing development for the future of CGI and a clear signal into the investment being made in the global running community,” said Josh Furlow, President of CGI. “IRONMAN is a tremendous organization with incredible brand strength and I look forward to working with Andrew to bring together two of the world’s greatest event producers collectively as one team.”
Since the debut of the of the signature Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series in 1998, CGI has continued to expand to key cities throughout the United States, covering 22 major markets in the United States and eight international races from the United Kingdom to China, creating the largest running series in the world. The Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series innovated the running industry by infusing the course with live bands, cheer teams, and creating a block-party atmosphere for participants and spectators. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the series with the Synchrony Financial Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Marathon on June 3-4.
For a full listing of Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon events, visit www.runrocknroll.com. For more information on the IRONMAN brand and global event series, visit www.ironman.com. Media may contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lazard Middle Market acted as financial advisor to CGI in the transaction.
A Wanda Sports Holdings company, IRONMAN operates a global portfolio of events that includes the IRONMAN® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® 70.3® Triathlon Series, 5150™ Triathlon Series, Iron Girl®, IRONKIDS®, International Triathlon Union World Triathlon Series races, road cycling events including the UCI Velothon Majors Series, mountain bike races, premier marathons and other multisport races. IRONMAN’s events, together with all other Wanda Sports Holdings events, provide more than 680,000 participants annually the benefits of endurance sports through the company’s vast offerings. The iconic IRONMAN® Series of events is the largest participation sports platform in the world. Since the inception of the IRONMAN® brand in 1978, athletes have proven that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE® by crossing finish lines at the world’s most challenging endurance races. Beginning as a single race, IRONMAN has grown to become a global sensation with more than 200 events across 50 countries. For more information, visit www.ironman.com.
About Wanda Sports Holdings
Wanda Sports Holdings is the world’s leading sports business entity, founded to capture the opportunities in the global sports industry and to contribute to the prosperous international sports landscape – in three key areas: 1) Spectator Sports (media & marketing business), 2) Participation Sports (active lifestyle business), 3) Services (digital, production and service business). Wanda Sports Holding incorporates the international sports marketing company Infront Sports & Media, the iconic endurance brand IRONMAN, and Wanda Sports China. The headquarters are in Guangzhou, China.
About Competitor Group, Inc. (CGI)
Headquartered in San Diego, Calif., Competitor Group, Inc. (CGI) is the active lifestyle industry’s leading media and event entertainment company. CGI owns and operates 36 events around the world, including its flagship Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series welcoming more than 600,000 professional and amateur participants in 2017. Anchoring the company with rich content are four publishing brands dedicated to running, cycling and triathlon including Women’s Running, Triathlete, VeloNews and Competitor with a combined monthly circulation of over 500,000. The race services division of CGI, Race IT is the second largest provider of online registration solutions to endurance event organizers around the world. Further information about CGI can be found at CompetitorMediaKit.com.
CGI/Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon