For Immediate Release
March 26, 2007, Bethel, CT – The Cannondale Bicycle Corporation today announced that internationally recognized NBA superstar LeBron James, through his wholly owned company King James Inc., has acquired an undisclosed ownership stake in Cannondale.
The privately held company, which began amidst modest surroundings in a loft above a pickle factory in 1971, has a passion for continuous innovation and quality and has never wavered from its goal of delivering the ultimate cycling experience. Cannondale has a long history of delivering premium-performance products to athletes worldwide.
Cannondale has teamed up with LeBron to provide bicycles for the James Family Foundation’s annual “King for Kids Bike-a-thon,” a charity bike ride event in Akron which benefits children and single mothers. For the 2006 bike-a-thon, the company designed and manufactured a custom bike for LeBron based on the Caffeine™ model design, which he has subsequently incorporated into his training regimen.
LeBron’s bike uses Cannondale’s 29er frame painted in team colors and features the company’s Lefty® fork and Si Hollowgram™ cranks. In addition, Cannondale donated custom Bad Boy bikes for athletes to ride at the event as well as bikes to be auctioned off to benefit the charity.
“Cannondale is one of the premier cycling companies in the industry,” said LeBron James. “Biking is an extremely important part of my training routine, and I like to invest in what I know.”
“LRMR is constantly seeking interesting investment opportunities for LeBron, who is a smart and sophisticated businessman,” said Maverick Carter, CEO of LRMR Innovative Marketing & Branding. “Cannondale is the perfect fit for LeBron and LRMR as we continue to invest in companies that are leading, cutting-edge brands.”
“We’re very excited to have LeBron as an owner. In addition, LeBron is one of the world’s most accomplished athletes and we are proud to provide him with bicycles for his cross-training,” said CEO Matt Mannelly. “LeBron is an astute entrepreneur and investor who recognizes the quality of our products and value of our business, and he will certainly extend the awareness of the benefits of cycling to more people.”
Added Mannelly, “Cannondale is the brand of choice for cross-training athletes who are continually upgrading their performance in any sport and realize that cycling can contribute to helping them achieve their goals. There are many star athletes in other sports cross-training on Cannondales today because our bikes deliver a competitive edge.”
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About LeBron James
LeBron James is an internationally recognized basketball superstar who plays for the Cleveland Cavaliers. Selected to the NBA All-Star team every year since he joined the league as the overall No. 1 pick in the 2003 draft, James has electrified fans across the globe with his dazzling play and record-breaking achievements. He became the youngest player in NBA history to win Rookie of the Year honors and reach 5,000 points.
James is also a co-captain of the U.S. Olympic basketball team. Off the court, LeBron is active in a wide range of philanthropic endeavors, including The James Family Foundation. He also organizes the annual King for Kids Bike-a-thon in Akron, Ohio.
About LRMR Innovative Marketing & Branding
LRMR Innovative Marketing & Branding’s mission is to significantly alter the sports marketing landscape by leveraging sports, celebrity and corporate infusion partnerships. We recognize the changing roles of athletes and how this affects a company’s marketing and branding programs. LRMR helps global advertisers and sponsors strategically choose their partners. By developing and managing relationships that promote growth and add value, we make both entities stronger.
In essence, LRMR redefines brands.
About Cannondale Bicycle Corporation
Cannondale Bicycle Corporation, headquartered in Bethel, Connecticut, designs, develops and produces bicycles at its factory in Bedford, Pennsylvania. The company operates subsidiaries in Holland, Japan, and Australia, and is owned by Pegasus Partners II, L.P., a private equity investment firm based in Greenwich, Connecticut.