In 2002, two guys â€” one a bike shop owner, the other an entrepreneur â€” set out to determine if there was a viable business in professional cycling.
Could it be run like a business? Could they get investors who saw value beyond real estate on a jersey? They thought they could, in fact, and so Thierry Attias (bike shop owner) agreed to manage sponsorships while his friend Greg Raifman took over athlete management. All they needed were athletes and sponsors. Easy.
After many presentations and promises, they had their first title sponsor, Moosehead Beer. Which was great. Until a bigger sponsor, HealthNet also expressed an interest. In a fortunately humorous moment, the suggestion of team name, â€śThe Moosehead-HealthNet Cycling Team,â€ť was met with (much) friendly laughter, as the beer and health insurance industries occupy non-complementary positions as title sponsors for a pro cycling team. HealthNet decided to cover both sponsorships and in the fall of 2002 Momentum Sports Group had its first cycling team.
Thierry and Greg did almost everything themselves the first year, even handing up food and water bottles. 80-hour week followed 80-hour week. But victory followed victory as well. One of their first stars, Gord Fraser, won 14 races the inaugural season. Keeping it lean by only paying the top two racers but covering expenses for the other ten, Momentum was able to grow quickly. Year two saw a 5-fold increase in the budget. That meant proper staff and team vehicles to further support an elite, carefully-chosen squad.
From the beginning Momentum has focused on a positive and professional work environment not only for staff but for the team. This creates much more value for sponsors who see the team as a complete asset for building their businesses. Not just moving billboards. Momentum combines a deep passion for the sport of cycling with sound business principles and practices.
Today Momentum is a 70-person marketing organization built around world-recognized, winning cycling teams that can be deployed in multiple ways on its clientsâ€™ behalf.
Momentum operates professional continental menâ€™s, world tour women's, and professional cyclocross programs.Â We currently have 19 partners and over 35 athletes, which will include four Olympians this year.
President & Co-Founder
VP, Client Services
High Performance Director
Head Sporting Director