Spyder Active Sports Inc. has provided outerwear for U.S. Ski & Snowboard since before many of the team’s athletes were born.
That’s no more, as the winter sports’ governing body has inked a new apparel sponsorship with Italian brand Kappa.
Boulder-based Spyder had the ski team’s apparel deal for the past 33 years.
“Kappa will outfit all teams with outerwear, speed and race suits beginning with the 2022-23 season and provide additional support for all U.S. domestic and FIS World Cup events through the 2032 season,” according to a U.S. Ski news release.
Additionally, the sponsorship contract “includes outfitting all U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes who will compete in the 2026 Olympic Winter Games in Italy and the 2030 Olympic Games. The partnership will include a fashion retail line helping to expand Kappa’s footprint across the U.S.”
Snowboarding athletes were not included in the previous Spyder deal.
Accomplished Canadian skier and coach David Jacobs founded Spyder in 1978 as a mail order business from his kitchen.
“One of David’s early creations was a blue racing pant with yellow striped protective pads. Skiers began calling them ‘spider’ pants, due to their spider leg-like appearance,” according to a company history compiled by the National Ski Council Federation.
NCAA championship University of Colorado skier Jeff Temple soon joined Jacobs to help grow the brand and secure its U.S. Ski sponsor, but was bought out a few years later, the Steamboat Pilot & Today reported.
Jacobs was inducted into the Boulder County Business Hall of Fame in 2004. At the award ceremony, Jacobs told the audience that he felt as though he were sitting on a rocket and trying to hold on. He previously had won another Boulder County award — the Esprit Entrepreneur award from the Boulder Chamber — in 1991.
When Spyder and U.S. Ski celebrated their pearl anniversary in 2019, Dan Barnett, U.S. Ski & Snowboard chief marketing officer, said in a prepared statement, “For more than 30 years Spyder has been the perfect partner for our Alpine team and now we are very pleased to be able to announce that Spyder is adding our Freestyle and Freeski teams to its roster. Spyder is now the exclusive apparel partner for our Alpine, Freestyle and Freeski teams, a partnership that takes us through 2023, which means Spyder will be worn exclusively by more than 50 world-class athletes competing in Beijing during the 2022 Olympic Winter Games.”
Representatives with Spyder, Kappa and U.S. Ski did not immediately respond to requests for comment Monday.
Turin, Italy-based Kappa is owned by BasicNet SpA, an Italian company that also owns clothing and apparel brands such as Robe di Kappa, Jesus Jeans, K-Way, Superga, Sabelt, Briko and Sebago.
“We are incredibly excited to partner with such an iconic brand that will enhance our team’s performance and style,” U.S. Ski & Snowboard president and CEO Sophie Goldschmidt said in a statement. “The opportunity to have a single outerwear and race suit provider for all teams will allow us to streamline every aspect of this partnership to reach its fullest potential. In addition, Kappa’s research and development will provide U.S. athletes with significant technical advantages as they focus on next season, the 2026 Olympic Winter Games and beyond.”
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