Ryan Lochte loses all four endorsements after Rio controversy
- By DARREN ROVELL via ESPN
Aug 22, 2016, 4:40 PM ET
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Ryan Lochte lost all four of his endorsements on Monday as three companies — Speedo, Gentle Hair Removal and Airweave — terminated their deals with the swimmer, while Ralph Lauren said it wouldn't renew its deal that ran through the 2016 Olympics.
Speedo, which signed Lochte to a 10-year deal in 2006, said in a statement that it would end its relationship with the decorated swimmer, who has won 12 Olympic medals, including six golds, while wearing its products.
"While we have enjoyed a winning relationship with Ryan for over a decade and he has been an important member of the Speedo team, we cannot condone behavior that is counter to the values this brand has long stood for," the company said in a statement. "We appreciate his many achievements and hope he moves forward and learns from this experience."
Speedo said it would donate $50,000 of Lochte's endorsement fee to Save The Children, earmarked for Brazilian children.
It is not clear how much time was left on Speedo's deal with Lochte.
Lochte said in a statement to E! News, "I respect Speedo's decision and am grateful for the opportunities that our partnership has afforded me over the years. I am proud of the accomplishments that we have achieved together."
Later Monday, Ralph Lauren issued a statement saying it would not renew Lochte's contract.?
"Ralph Lauren continues to proudly sponsor the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Team and the values that its athletes embody," the statement read. "Ralph Lauren's endorsement agreement with Ryan Lochte was specifically in support of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and the company will not be renewing his contract."
Then, the parent company of Gentle Hair Removal, Syneron Candela, issued a statement ending its relationship with Lochte.
"Syneron Candela will be ending its partnership with Ryan Lochte," the statement read. "We hold our employees to high standards, and we expect the same of our business partners. We wish Ryan well on his future endeavors and thank him for the time he spent supporting our brand."
Finally, mattress company Airweave parted ways with Lochte on Monday afternoon.
"Airweave is a proud sponsor of the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Teams and our dedication to athletic achievement is unwavering," read a statement from Airweave. "Our endorsement agreement with Ryan Lochte was in support of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. After careful consideration, we have made the decision to end our partnership with Ryan Lochte. We remain committed to supporting Team USA and the athletes preparing for the Paralympic games."
Airweave CEO Motokuni Takaoka had said last week in a statement that Lochte "will remain a US ambassador for Airweave as long as our partnership agreement remains effective."
Lochte, who admitted he was drunk in the early-morning hours of Aug. 14, destroyed a sign at a gas station. He and the swimmers were then held by security guards with guns at the gas station and released after they paid a fee. Lochte later said in an interview with NBC that ?the swimmers were robbed at gunpoint, an account which he later called an exaggeration.
When asked by NBC's Matt Lauer whether his original version of the story could cost him his endorsements, Lochte answered it could.
"And that's something I'm going to have to live with," Lochte said.
Lochte also faces potential disciplinary action from the U.S. Olympic Committee, with CEO Scott Blackmun saying Sunday that further action was coming. USA Swimming and the IOC could both sanction Lochte.
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