Professional Triathletes Organisation Responds To Wanda Sports Board’s Decision Declining To Enter Into Discussions To Sell Ironman® Business
October 4, 2019
LONDON, ENGLAND–BOULDER, USA: The Professional Triathletes Organisation today released the following letter sent to the Board of Directors of Wanda Sports Group Company Limited on 3rd October 2019 responding to the Wanda Board’s decision to decline to enter into discussions to sell its Ironman® and related mass participation business.
3rd October 2019
Andrew Messick Board of Directors
Chief Executive Officer Wanda Sports Group Company
World Triathlon Corporation Wanda Plaza
3407 W. Martin Luther King Blvd 93 Jianguo Road Chaoyang District
Suite 100 Beijing, China
Tampa, Florida 33607 Attn: Mr. Hengming Yang–CEO
On behalf of the Professional Triathletes Organisation (the “PTO”) we acknowledge that, in response to our letter dated 20th September 2019 proposing to enter into discussions for the acquisition by the PTO of all of the assets of the Wanda Sports Group Company Limited (“WSG”) related to its worldwide triathlon and mass participation business (the “WTC Triathlon-MP Business”), you have sent us the following response: “I have discussed your letter with my Board. While we appreciate your interest, we are not prepared to engage in a discussion around a sale at this point.”
Please be advised that the PTO will continue to implement its strategy for self-determination successfully followed by professional athletes in other sports such as golf and tennis, and we plan on moving forward with acquiring and operating events in the space to celebrate the sport we are so passionate about. Rest assured that our plan is not mutually exclusive and our proposal to enter into discussions to acquire the WTC Triathlon-MP Business remains open. Together with North Point Advisors we are prepared to begin such discussions immediately should the WSG Board reassess its position.
As we have mentioned, we have great respect for you and the dedicated Ironman® management team. Unfortunately, we believe the over-leveraged capital structure of WSG has hampered the ability of the organisation to make the needed investments in the business, putting great constraints on its operating capabilities, and has demoralised the talented and dedicated staff. The WTC Triathlon-MP Business and the triathlon community would be well served by a new owner who would be able to rectify the structural and leverage issues that exist today. We believe the PTO is uniquely positioned to be able to pay a fair price to WSG, thus providing value to its stockholders, inject additional capital for needed investment, and incentivise and unleash the Ironman® management team to achieve great things for a sport for which we all have a tremendous shared passion.
We are very excited about the upcoming Ironman® World Championships at Kona and grateful for the entire Ironman® team as they work diligently in staging a truly world-class event. It is a great opportunity to celebrate the abilities and achievements of all the athletes competing, professionals and age-groupers alike, as well as all the volunteers who contribute so much to the triathlon family. We wish you the best of luck with the race and are confident it will be a huge success.
/s/ Charles Adamo /s/ Sam Renouf
Charles D. Adamo Sam Renouf
Chairman Chief Executive Officer
/s/ Rachel Joyce /s/ Dylan McNiece
Rachel Joyce Dylan McNeice
Athlete Director Athlete Director
About The Professional Triathletes Organisation
The Professional Triathletes Organisation is a not-for-profit entity representing the body of professional triathletes and seeks to showcase the passion, talents, determination, struggles and achievements of the dedicated professionals who strive to realise the highest levels of the sport and inspire all those who participate in triathlon, from seasoned age groupers to newbies.
About North Point Advisors
North Point Advisors is a leading independent investment bank focused on providing financial advice on mergers and acquisitions and raising institutional capital to meet the growth objectives of its clients. Since its founding in 2004, North Point Advisors has advised on more than 160 transactions representing world class brands in over $25 billion of transaction value. Its industries of focus include consumer, wellness, and healthcare, and it has one of the largest and most experienced consumer M&A teams on Wall Street, completing transactions with leading brands such as Starbucks, Jimmy John’s, Kosta Browne Winery, Landry’s, Golden Nugget Casinos, Massage Envy, and Peanuts by Schulz.