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Last week, Sarah Swallow was bikepacking through a rural stretch of Baja California Sur when she got the call: Specialized was terminating her contract that ran through December 2023, effective immediately.
Swallow was one of Specialized’s global ambassadors, a loosely-knit team of cyclists who provide content and other services for the brand in exchange for product and a salary.
In fact, the Baja bikepacking trip was just the type of adventure where Swallow would have generated some ‘deliverables,’ like photos and video, for Specialized as part of their agreement.
However, as of next year, Swallow — along with a handful of other riders — won’t be doing business with Specialized anymore.
Swallow said she was told that “the global ambassador budget had been cut to 0, that they were eliminating all global ambassadors, and as of last week they were prepared to resign everyone.”
Other athletes, like Steve Fassbinder and Ty Hathaway, who had similar deals with Specialized, corroborated Swallow’s story.“I was told nobody’s going to be saying they’re an ambassador for Specialized any more, from someone who gets a bike and gives it back to someone like us who got a salary for being a good representative and providing content,” Hathaway said. The exact number is unknown, but Specialized currently has a wide-ranging ambassador program, with athletes like Swallow, Fassbinder, and Hathaway who earn a salary […]
Continue reading the original article at: www.velonews.com