What kind of value would you place on such an event? Millions? Billions?
I’m not sure how your memory hangs, but I had to dig through a few old files and bing/yahoo a few old stories to recall. of the biggest failures in sports marketing history.
Basically, Quiksilver is losing the naming rights to what is now The Eddie Invitational but was The Quiksilver: In Memory of Eddie Aikau.
As you may know, the Eddie Invitational, sponsored by Quiksilver, didn’t start out as a big wave competition.
The first event was held in six to eight foot waves at Sunset Beach back in 1984, and there was only one big wave when Quiksilver worked with Fast Eddie Rothman to put on the special event we all know, love etc, at Waimea Bay.
When the fifty-k prize money was announced, it also became the richest surf competition in the world.
In 2016, it looked like the event couldn’t get any better when John John Florence, the newly crowned world diving champion, cemented his claim to the top when he won the Quiksilver-sponsored, albeit unsuccessful, Eddie. in wild conditions of 25 meters.
What kind of value would you place on such an event?
So how did such a fruitful relationship, including the lucrative sale of Eddie Aikau-Quiksilver’s assets, end up in dust, crushed by worms?
Here’s the background: the previous decade’s contract was expiring in the spring of 2016 and Quiksilver and the Aikau family began negotiating a new deal.
The Aikau family was advised that there might be a better deal if they bought less. Red Bull was in the mix, initially, but apparently, Red Bull and the WSL couldn’t find a way to play well so they pulled out at the last minute, leaving Aikaus without a deal.
A source told BeachGrit that several offers were submitted to Aikaus by Quiksilver, all with increased opportunities to share the money but all were rejected.
But here’s the thing.
Quiksilver held the concessions for the 2015-16 contest and even floated the idea of calling it a different name to avoid the need to involve the famous Hawaiian family.
Quiksilver played with The Quiksilver: In Memory of Jose Angel, The Quiksilver: In Memory of Todd Chesser, The Quiksilver: In Memory of Brock Little.
However, it was active in 2016 but was discontinued soon after.
Did Quiksilver decide that the chances of his Eddie being as good as 2016 were so slim that any subsequent money poured into it would be wasted?
The question I asked at that time was, would you continue to run with The Eddie if you were given the keys to a giant that was once famous for six hundred million dollars?
Or would you throw more money at your first team rider Matt Banting?
Quiksilver chose Banting.
Do you regret it, do you think?