By Tom Kelly – USSA.ORG
The U.S. Ski Team Wednesday announced a major partnership with Neve Designs, a specialty manufacturer of knit sweaters based in Boulder, CO. The announcement was made in the midst of a month where the Team was showcased at the FIS Nordic Ski World Championships in Norway and the Alpine Ski World Championships in Germany as Neve prepared to launch a European marketing push as the Official Sweater of the U.S. Ski Team.
The U.S. Ski Team’s Ted Ligety led a three medal performance at the Alpine Worlds in Germany with a gold in giant slalom. Julia Mancuso and Lindsey Vonn also won medals for the U.S. Ski Team. The Nordic World Championships continue through this weekend in Oslo.
“Neve has amazing product which is both functional and attractive to our athletes,” said the Team’s Chief Revenue and Marketing Officer Andrew Judelson. “Most importantly, though, Neve understands how to creatively merchandise around our U.S. Ski Team brand globally.”
The long term partnership extends through 2019 both as a supplier to the Team and a licensee, taking logoed sweaters to market both in the USA and worldwide. The partnership covers all U.S. Ski Team sports including alpine, freestyle and nordic with top Team athletes being provided with Neve sweaters. Neve will be the exclusive provider of sweaters and knit woolen products including sweaters, sweater vests, scarves and cardigans, along with U.S. Ski Team belt buckles. In addition, Neve was named as a licensee for the U.S. Snowboarding brand.
“The association with the U.S. Ski Team is our own call to excellence,” said Neve President and CEO Tom Irvine. “It pushes everyone involved to work harder and maintain uncompromising standards. This isn’t a mere marketing decision – it’s a long term strategic business direction for Neve.”
As a key U.S. Ski Team supplier, Neve will be featured in the Team’s VIP hospitality programs at the 2014 and 2018 Olympics, as well as the 2015 FIS Alpine Ski World Championships in Beaver Creek/Vail. Neve will also sponsor the Team’s alumni party held annually during the Beaver Creek World Cup in early December.
Neve has been a licensing partner of the Team since 2007. The new agreement expands its role as a major supplier.
“We have not only enjoyed the personal friendships created with the athletes, staff and other partners,” said Irvine, “but also the authentic connection to skiers worldwide.”