UCI Furloughs Staff, Refunds Event Fees, & Senior Staff Take Pay Cuts

Apr 9, 2020
by James Smurthwaite  

The UCI has announced it is furloughing 130 staff and its leaders are taking pay cuts to confront the financial consequences of the Coronavirus pandemic.

To help event organisers, the UCI will also reimburse all registration fees to organisers of cancelled events that were due to take place in the lockdown period, which at the moment is any event up to June 1. That currently totals 650 events, or 30% of the international calendar, with road and mountain biking events being the most affected.

The calendar fees represent a significant portion of the UCI’s revenue and this move is expected to have consequences for the UCI’s financial results. The press release highlights that the Mercedes-Benz UCI Mountain Bike World Cup and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics are especially important to its revenue and could incur "considerable loss of earnings".

Amaury Pierron smashed his way onto the hot seat before enduring a nail biting climax to the 209 season.
World Cup rounds are described as "notably important in terms of revenue" for the UCI.

To combat the financial difficulties, the UCI is introducing a number of cost-saving measures that will allow it to, "get through this crisis with limited damage, as long as the situation does not last longer than current predictions".

These measures include:

- The UCI’s leaders (elected and Senior Management) have decided to reduce their salaries or allowances.
- Full or partial furlough – at different percentages – for all 130 employees of the UCI and UCI WCC.
- Freezing of recruitment for an undefined period.
- Total revision of projects and objectives that had been fixed for 2020 and following years, and those in progress.
- Resizing of solidarity projects for National Federations.
- Generalisation of virtual meetings for the Management Committee, UCI Commissions and seminars.
- Examination (in progress) of contracts of service providers at events, consultants and general providers.

bigquotesOur International Federation is going through a crisis that we haven’t experienced since the Second World War. Inactivity is hitting athletes, teams, organisers, partners and the large majority of people and organisations that contribute to the vitality of our sport, across all its disciplines. The UCI, cycling’s governing body, has not been spared, far from it. The postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the multiplication of postponements and cancellations of events on the UCI International Calendar, and the uncertainty that weighs on the second part of the season are having a large impact on our sport in general and our Federation in particular. It is time for the cycling family to rally and, as one, prepare our sport to recover from this health and economic crisis that it has been hit by. Each of us is called on to be united, responsible and strong. That is why the UCI has taken some drastic action that should enable it to weather the storm. These choices are difficult but necessary if we wish to rebuild cycling post-Covid-19.David Lappartient, UCI president

Press Release

In the current context of the coronavirus pandemic, the President of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) David Lappartient called an extraordinary meeting of the UCI Management Committee on 2 April. A series of economic measures were adopted at the meeting to confront the sporting and financial consequences of the world health crisis for the International Federation, in a situation marked by the postponement – or even cancellation – of all upcoming cycling competitions.

Cycling at a halt

The serious situation of international cycling, forced to a halt several weeks ago until at least 1st June 2020, has been studied in depth. The impact of the world health crisis on the UCI International Calendar is considerable: as of this date, the UCI has received more than 650 requests from organisers for the postponement or cancellation of events over a period that currently extends until the month of August. This figure represents 30% of the year’s UCI International Calendar. Road and mountain bike are the most affected disciplines. For example, the Giro d’Italia, the Tour des Flandres and Paris-Roubaix, three prestigious UCI WorldTour events, have been affected. Likewise, the UCI Mountain Bike Cross-country World Championships presented by Mercedes-Benz in Albstadt (Germany) have been postponed. In addition, several rounds of the Mercedes-Benz UCI Mountain Bike World Cup must be rescheduled, while others have had to be cancelled at the request of their organisers. The UCI World Championships for BMX Racing have also been pushed back, and those for para-cycling road risk cancellation.

On top of this difficult situation comes the postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, finally pushed back one year by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) – they will take place from 23 July to 8 August 2021 and from 24 August to 5 September 2021 respectively –, after a period during which there had still been a possibility of maintaining the initial dates. Wishing to guarantee the security of athletes and sporting equity between nations for cycling events whose qualification procedures were still ongoing (mountain bike, BMX Racing, BMX Freestyle and road para-cycling), our Federation had made a proposition to the IOC and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) to stop the procedure as of 3 March, taking into account that until that date no nation had been prevented from travelling to events. Our Federation continues its discussions with the IOC and the IPC given the postponement of the next Olympic and Paralympic Games to 2021.

It is clear that the aforementioned postponements and cancellations will unfortunately lead to a significant reduction of revenues for the UCI.

Inactivity that weighs heavily on UCI finances

The current pandemic is hitting organisers of cycling events hard. A considerable number of races have been cancelled, and our Federation has recommended all organisers of competitions in zones at risk to cancel their events. In solidarity and as part of the support measures put in place since the beginning of the crisis, the UCI will reimburse all calendar registration fees to organisers of cancelled events due to take place in the period during which the holding of events is fully restricted. The calendar fees represent a significant part of the UCI’s revenue. This initiative will have consequences on the UCI’s financial results.

Conscious of the impact of the current crisis on the professional peloton, the UCI created a working group, composed of representatives of riders (CPA), teams (AIGCP) and our Federation. The UCI and its partners have agreed on the framework that will enable teams facing serious financial difficulties to be able to take necessary measures so they can continue in the context of the pandemic. With this temporary flexibility approved by the players of professional road cycling, our Federation wishes to support teams whose activities have been touched by the Covid-19, while maintaining the respect of the riders’ rights and in accordance with the UCI Regulation. Further measures of support could be taken during the UCI’s regular discussions with its partners, depending on the evolution of the situation.

Particular consideration is being given to the UCI World Championships and UCI World Cups. The rounds of the Mercedes-Benz UCI Mountain Bike World Cup are notably important in terms of revenue for our organisation. The postponement or cancellation of numerous UCI events as well as the general economic situation have of course also had an impact on the overall marketing activities of our Federation.

Concerning UCI World Championships, the effects of the Covid-19 have already been felt with the postponements of the UCI BMX World Championships in Houston (United States) and the UCI Mountain Bike Cross-country World Championships presented by Mercedes-Benz in Albstadt. The situation of the 2020 UCI Road World Championships in Aigle-Martigny (Switzerland) is of course being closely followed, even though these Championships would appear to be safe from the consequences of Covid-19 given their date (20-27 September).

Moreover, the postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games will lead to a considerable loss of earnings for our Federation. We need to anticipate both a possible postponement – to 2021 – of the payment of Olympic revenues initially expected in the second semester of 2020, and a probable reduction of the sum paid to the International Federations (IFs). This amount enables the UCI to fulfil its development mission vis-à-vis its 196 National Federations throughout the Olympic cycle, via the UCI World Cycling Centre (WCC) and its Satellite Centres around the world. The UCI is one of the few IFs with this type of Centre and has trained some 120 athletes each year since 2002. We are following this question very closely and are in constant contact with the IOC as it currently examines the extra costs resulting from the postponement.

At the same time, our Federation is facing an interruption of its commercial activities after the closure, on 16 March, of its headquarters in Aigle (Switzerland) to the public. Likewise, the UCI WCC has put a temporary halt to its training activities after deciding its trainee athletes should return to their countries. Our high-level athletes continue to be coached, at a distance, as part of their training programme and to maintain their sporting level.

Finally, it should be noted that our Federation’s asset portfolio has suffered from the effects of the pandemic on the financial markets, combined with the collapse of oil prices.

The good management of our activities over the years and our strategy of selling our UCI World Championships well in advance will enable us to honour our commitment vis-à-vis the cycling family and get through this crisis with limited damage, as long as the situation does not last longer than current predictions.

A necessary cost-saving plan

In a health and economic context where there is no clear view of when the crisis will end, the UCI has established several scenarios of the impact of current events on its results. Conscious that the situation is worrying and that the savings made until now have been marginal (costs linked notably to the interruption of travel of UCI International Commissaires) the UCI Management Committee approved an unprecedented cost-saving plan with the following principal points:

- The UCI’s leaders (elected and Senior Management) have decided to reduce their salaries or allowances.
- Full or partial furlough – at different percentages – for all 130 employees of the UCI and UCI WCC.
- Freezing of recruitment for an undefined period.
- Total revision of projects and objectives that had been fixed for 2020 and following years, and those in progress.
- Resizing of solidarity projects for National Federations.
- Generalisation of virtual meetings for the Management Committee, UCI Commissions and seminars.
- Examination (in progress) of contracts of service providers at events, consultants and general providers.


  • 50 5
 I posted elsewhere a month ago that if the DH season gets cancelled do we just name Tracy and Mick Hannah World Champions for 2020 as they both won the first Crankworx DH?
  • 7 1
 that would be rad
  • 41 6
 In the next News UCI dies. Redbull forms their own Cyclist Organization. Woke persons keep posting #drinkwater
  • 3 0
 Somebody will buy it For 1/3 of current UCI value. Next year. You are not far from scenario. ????????
  • 4 0
 You give me hope
  • 20 9
 I don't see everything going back to normal until there is a vaccine. People like myself who haven't been infected and who want to make sure they don't get infected to protect their loved ones aren't going to be eager to participate in anything when things might start to try to go back to normal during the summer. The fact that it could mutate and people are getting it a second time after getting over it is not reassuring and makes this seem like it could be a long term pandemic.
  • 11 0
 I agree. There is such a big gap in going from “stay home, minimize contact with people” to “we are hosting a huge event with thousands of attendees”. To think that it will be a snap back situation seems unlikely. Especially with a global recession looming.
  • 11 1
 If it mutates a vaccine won’t do anything. You’re only vaccinated against 1 strain... thats one of the reasons why people are still getting flu
  • 10 2
 @timbud: Exactly. People think a 'flu vaccine' exists. Well, they do, for ONE strain. Each year the most prevalent strain is used as a basis for the vaccines. And yet thousands still die, unfortunate as that is. Once at least one vaccine is created, this 'shut the world down' crap needs to come to an end. Moving forward, this will be just like any other virus with varying affects on the same or at risk groups as similar viruses....AKA, diabetics, smokers, overweight, those with current respiratory issues, etc.
  • 11 0
 @bman33: My wife is a physician and consults with infectous disease experts. So I feel I have a better understanding than most, especially people who only rely on the media (cringing ) for their info.

I agree with your statement 100%.

In 2016, 18 million people worldwide died from cardiovascular related diseases, 1 million from suicide...
  • 7 7
 @DoubleCrownAddict Are you bragging about being a panicky pete, or a hypochondriac?

Things will soon slowly get back to normal wether you like it or not. Curves are flattening, deaths WAY under even the lowest models, and that’s just a fact. Get a grip bruh.
  • 8 5
 @Off-my-lawn-hippie: So people should to be comfortable with transferring the virus to people they live with who have severe asthma and could die from it? Just because some people get over it doesn't mean the people who's lives are threatened by it are going to be any less paranoid.

The people who are saying we should just accept it and get back to normal are mostly the same people who dismissed the potential risk at a crucial time, didn't take it seriously, and got is into mess in the first place. That mindset clearly can no longer be trusted and many people's mindsets are finally grasping reality:

  • 7 3
 @DoubleCrownAddict: I mean, you can continue to self-isolate for as long as you want, but I don't see why the rest of us should have to.
  • 6 3
 @DoubleCrownAddict: Maybe the people at most risk should self isolate rather than punishing whole because of a few? Do we ban peanuts? Peanut allergies are deadly you know.
  • 4 10
flag johne71 (Apr 9, 2020 at 16:13) (Below Threshold)
 @Beez177: Wow! You are really lucky to have your finger so close to pulse. I bet it's great to be so close to all the answers without relying on the media! Amazing! Now I've read your 'statement' and I think that you are indeed 100% a prick.
  • 3 4
 @johne71: opinions are like a*sholes, a*shole..
  • 2 6
flag johne71 (Apr 9, 2020 at 16:35) (Below Threshold)
 @Beez177: and which do you class as a*sholes? The 18 million or the 1 million? Finish you're well informed point.......arsehole.
  • 2 9
flag Beez177 (Apr 9, 2020 at 16:40) (Below Threshold)
 @johne71: nice profile no pictures, no history, nothing...Are you even real or just a little bitch. What's the matter lost your job, boyfriend dumped you, cant pay your rent, your face looks like a pizza?? I'm guessing all of the above. Go back to polishing knobs for beer money.
  • 2 6
flag johne71 (Apr 9, 2020 at 16:47) (Below Threshold)
 @Beez177: Yep, my first comment was accurate! Thanks for the proving it in public!
  • 2 4
 @johne71: You get a gold medal. Congrats. Good luck .
  • 4 1
 @johne71: his point is valid. You are trying to discredit him by name calling and implying he has no knowledge or context. Yet, your own argument is pure conjecture and insult. f*ck off you sheep. Do some reading yourself, there are a lot valid debates with accompanying data and rational that question the narrative.
  • 1 2
 @Beez177: Thank you. Good luck to you sir and all those you care about.
  • 1 2
 @johne71: Back at ya sport. I know this is a stressful time and I lashed out as well. Cooler heads will prevail.
  • 3 1
 @Beez177: Sorted bud. It was actually an earlier comment that got me and off I went......here's to happier times. One mountain, one love.
  • 1 2
 @cmcrawfo: what was his point? What's your solution? Go on say it....
  • 2 2
 @johne71: My point is people are being retarded and ignorant a*sholes these days, and if they want to argue about something... as was always the case, they should at the least apply some level of fact and reasoning.
  • 7 1
You said it brother.
The '17-'18 flu season was abnormally bad because they missed the strain and created the wrong vaccine.
45 million people got the flu, 300-500,000 were hospitalized, and 80,000 died, here in the US(this year's 'season' was slightly less).
Yet, life went on. Businesses prospered, hospitals weren't overwhelmed.
Why? You can bet a large portion was because the media didn't go into 5th gear with it
People are being forced to stay at home, and they're glued to the 'news' 24/7.
The 'news' stopped being unbiased monochromatic deliverers of important information long ago. They're huge profit centers for their owners, and sell advertising off how many viewers they attract. They attract viewers with FEAR, point-blank, and right now they're making money hand-over-fist.
  • 2 0
 Legit question. How do you know you haven’t already been infected? Current thinking has between 25-50% of people that have been infected are/were asymptomatic. Check to see if you already have antibodies.

Also the flu vaccine typically reduces risk by 40-60% according to the CDC depending on the strain and mutations. Def worth the trouble if your in a high risk group.
  • 6 3
 @SacAssassin: I've been isolated throughout the pandemic so I'm pretty confident. I'm ordering most of my food and supplies off Amazon and wear a mask and gloves when I go out. Most of the medical experts say of things go back to normal too fast and without proper testing the virus could reemerge very badly.

Less than 1% of Americans have been tested so nobody really knows the real extent of the pandemic in America. It could be spreading in areas where people are still going to church and ignoring social distancing. I have no confidence in America's ability to contain this viris based upon what I am still seeing in my community and even my own neighborhood. Runny nosed kids out playing with other kids and spreading it to other families, lots of people not wearing masks, and way too many cars on the highways unnecessarily.

I'm actually of the opinion America is still only in the beginning stages of this long pandemic because of the lack of testing and leadership. America should be more locked down nationally and we are going to continue to pay a heavy price for not taking this virus seriously. People need to accept that some things never are going to be normal again.

  • 9 2
 Cycling gods threw a monkey wrench at the entire world as a last ditch effort to stop the advance of Ebikes. Will this Covid 19 pandemic be enough to thwart the advance of Ebikes? Time will tell........
  • 11 0
 is that Brendan Furlough
  • 5 0
 - The UCI’s leaders (elected and Senior Management) have decided to reduce their salaries or allowances.

By what percentage?
  • 24 4
 “We lowered salaries from 1k Euro a month to 500€ a month”
- That doesn’t sound like much so what about the bribes?
- “At that point we are still accepting the bribes but they just aren’t coming”
- Is this a protocol followed by all parties involved?
- Yes IOC and WADA are also accepting bribes at this moment.”
- That’s disgusting!
- No, only the higher level officials are allowed to take bribes, we are not corrupting the young. We have a long list of road racers paying us for silence. If they stop, we’ll be forced to begin Dick Pounding
  • 5 0
 Dick Pence...... a fraction of a Pound.
  • 4 0
 Truly sucks for those affected. Wish them the best of luck.

Now, can we just use this moment to replace UCI leadership when they all come back?
  • 6 1
 Disappointed that there are no Dick Pound comments yet.
  • 2 0
 There is, they just are below threshold and hidden.
  • 3 1
 Maybe if instead of buying a coffee every day and ordering out so much, they had saved their money, they would've been prepared to take a few weeks off work. The UCI that is, not the workers.
  • 3 0
 Will pinkbike fire some staff too.? @mikelevy get your golden parachute, now is your time to launch GRIM Bicycles !!! China's labour got cheaper lol
  • 1 0
 I`ve heard a rumor saying that the Tour de France might happen this year BUT without any public, ``à huis clot``like we say.

If the UCI maintains that thing and keeps the rest cancelled I promise them a single ticket to hell.
  • 1 0
 Interesting. UCI is a Swiss organization and they can ask government to cover the wages of employees during those times. Would be interested why this was not possible (I guess many of the employees are not based in Swiss).
  • 2 0
 The swiss have already said they will put everyone who isn't essential on technical chomage... which is essentially 80% of your salary for not working.... probably the cut they are on about haha
  • 1 0
 "- Generalisation of virtual meetings for the Management Committee, UCI Commissions and seminars." because it used to plane/hotel/restaurant for everyone I suppose...
Hope they'll learn how to switch Teams on for good.
  • 9 9
 if the management/senior staff isn't working, bc there's no racing right now, why do they deserve to even keep their jobs while everyone else gets furlowed? usually the admins do the least work and make the most.
  • 31 1
 The UCI's decisions can be frustrating at times, but I don't see what else could be done here. This isn't a time to be dancing on anyone's graves. The leadership that remain bear the responsibility to get our sport's racing going again, and I hope they can do it as safely and effectively as possible.
  • 7 0
 Also if you let all the managers go and keep the managees, who's driving?
  • 1 0
 If you furlough someone they can have no involvement with the business, they’d never be able to return to work as they have to authorise it.
  • 3 1
 Tough times for all. But management keeps their jobs while 130 staff lose theirs...
  • 1 0
 They haven't said anything about credit towards next year's license though. Some of us put out over 150 to race a year here in BC and won't see anything for it.
  • 3 1
 Dick Pound'ing fist. 'Nein, Nein, Nein'
  • 2 0
 But who is going to bust all the riders sharing water bottles?
  • 2 1
 Looks like Loic will have to wait another year to repeat...
  • 2 1
 Doesn't matter how you feel about the UCI this is not good for the sport.
  • 1 0
 You at PB are forgetting about the most essential news about WBP!!!
  • 1 0
 Good-bye 2020 DH season.
  • 1 0
 Bye bye season.
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