Speedo USA has ended its sponsorship with Olympic athlete Ryan Lochte after it emerged he embellished a story that he had been robbed at the Rio Olympic Games.
In a statement, the swimwear manufacturer said it has cut ties with Lochte because it “cannot condone behaviour that is counter to the values this brand has long stood for”.
“Speedo USA today announces the decision to end its sponsorship of Ryan Lochte,” read the statement.
“As part of this decision, Speedo USA will donate a $50,000 portion of Lochte’s fee to Save the Children, a global charity partner of Speedo USA’s parent company, for children in Brazil.
“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. We appreciate his many achievements and hope he moves forward and learns from his experience.”
The announcement follows the news that Ralph Lauren, Airweave and Syneron-Candela had also ended their sponsorships with Lochte.
Appearing on NBC on Saturday, the US swimmer said he “over-exaggerated” a story about being robbed at gunpoint in Rio de Janeiro.
The six-time gold medalist claimed he and a group of three other US swimmers had been robbed at a petrol station but CCTV footage contradicted that story and revealed the group had in fact vandalised the petrol station.
“If I hadn’t exaggerated the story or told the entire story, none of this would have happened,” he said in the interview.
“I was coming from the France house, I was highly intoxicated, and I made immature accusations. If I had not done that, none of this would have happened.”