Fresh off its inaugural event, the Professional Triathletes Organisation has hired Tim Godfrey as chief marketing officer. Godfrey will oversee the group’s global media strategy as well as its marketing efforts, a clear sign of how important content has become for sports looking to engage enthusiasts and break through to new fans.
Godfrey previously served as the chief media and marketing officer at SailGP and prior to that was Formula E’s global head of media. Godfrey said he was attracted to the PTO partly due to its athlete-ownership setup. Modeled after golf’s PGA/LPGA and tennis’ ATP/WTA, the PTO’s member-athletes are profit-sharing partners with Crankstart Investments. Crankstart is chaired by Michael Moritz, who is also a partner at Sequoia Capital.
“There’s a massive addressable audience for triathlon that hasn’t been served with a great, consistently delivered broadcast product,” Godfrey said. “That’s where I see a big opportunity.”
Triathlon participation exploded after its Olympic debut in 2000, according to The New York Times, with USA Triathlon counting well over 100,000 members for most of the last decade. Of course, many more potential viewers are already fans of one of the sport’s three components: running, swimming and cycling.
Godfrey’s first priority will be May’s Collins Cup, a Ryder Cup-like competition pitting competitors from the U.S., Europe, and the rest of the world against each other in Slovakia. He’ll also be tasked with developing a 365-day content strategy stretching across partner platforms, social media and direct-to-consumer efforts. Coverage of the PTO Championship at Daytona International Speedway in December was available in over 100 countries, including in the U.S. on Peacock, thanks to deals negotiated by IMG.
Said PTO CEO Sam Renouf, “[Godfrey] will be responsible for promoting triathlon on a global scale to the next generation of fans and attracting new audiences through innovative content, storytelling and a best-in-class broadcast product.”