30+ Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls descend upon San Francisco today for the Team Visa Summit
Andre De Grasse (Athletics), Aurélie Rivard (Para Swimming), Christine Sinclair (Football) and Sean McColl (Sport Climbing) join Team Visa Tokyo 2020
TORONTO, Nov. 13, 2019 /CNW/ - Visa (NYSE: V), the Worldwide Payment Technology Partner of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, today announced its most diverse roster of athletes on Team Visa Tokyo 2020. Representing 43 countries, the most in Team Visa history, the current roster is comprised of 70+ athletes across 30+ sports, including new additions to The Games: Surfing, Skateboarding and Sport Climbing.
The announcement was made at the Team Visa Summit, hosted at the company's San Francisco Innovation Center. The Summit offers athletes resources on how to improve financial literacy, benefit from digital payments and elevate their personal brand.
"As one of the longest standing partners of The Olympic and Paralympic Games, Visa looks forward to Tokyo 2020. Set to be the largest Games yet, Tokyo 2020 will feature 7,000 hours of broadcast programming and three billion minutes of streamed content," said Chris Curtin, chief brand and innovation marketing officer, Visa. "Our Team Visa Tokyo 2020 roster reflects The Games themselves: globally diverse, representative of new emerging sports and larger than ever. We are proud to reveal this year's Team Visa roster and support these athletes as they go for Gold in Tokyo."
The roster includes the following Canadian athletes:
Andre De Grasse (Scarborough, Ontario – Athletics, Sprinting): Andre won three medals competing at his first Olympic Games in 2016. Just the year before, Andre had burst onto the sprint scene winning events at both the NCAA Championships and the 2015 Pan Am Games. Andre overcame two years of injury and illness in becoming the only male sprinter to win medals in both the 100m and 200m events at the 2019 World Championships in Doha, Qatar. He's now a perfect seven for seven, finishing on the podium in each Olympic and World Championship final he's contested.
Aurélie Rivard (Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Québec – Para Swimming): Aurélie's swimming potential was spotted while she was training to become a lifeguard. She then began competing at the age of 11, and has really come to the fore since she claimed a silver medal in her first experience in the Paralympic Games London 2012. In the second Rio 2016 Paralympic Games she competed in, Rivard was triumphant in three events with world records in the 50m and 400m freestyle, taking home three gold medals and a silver medal. Most recently, she claimed five medals in the London 2019 World Para Swimming Championships.
Christine Sinclair (Burnaby, British Columbia – Football, Forward): Sinclair scored her first international goal competing in the 2000 Algarve Cup. She has scored more than 160 goals since, ranking first among active players and second of all time. She was her team's leading scorer at the Olympic Games London 2012, a feat that earned her the honour of Canada's closing ceremony flagbearer. She's won two Olympic Games Bronze Medals, has been named Canada Football's female Player of the Year 14 times, and was nominated seven times for FIFA Women's World Player of the Year.
Sean McColl (North Vancouver, British Columbia – Sport Climbing): At the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, the three climbing disciplines — speed, lead and bouldering — will be used in a combined format. While most top climbers choose to specialize, Sean McColl prides himself in his versatility and competes in all three events. He has won major competitions in each. McColl earned his first Bouldering World Cup win in 2013. In 2014 and 2016, he won the Combined World Cup, while in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2015 he ranked second. His secret formula? Focus, with perspective.
View the current Team Visa roster for Tokyo 2020 here.
"I am excited to join Team Visa alongside my fellow Canadian athletes as we prepare for Tokyo 2020," said Sean McColl, nine-time World Champion. "In hopes to compete at my first Olympic Games, the support and encouragement from partners like Visa makes me feel like I can achieve my goals, both in The Games and beyond."
Team Visa for Tokyo 2020 Founded in 2000, Team Visa has championed nearly 500 athletes. Each has been selected based on athletic achievements, character and personal journey, and are representative of many of Visa's brand values and priorities, including:
Gender Equality: Since the beginning of Team Visa, on average 54% of Team Visa have been women, including the 41 women athletes for Tokyo 2020, underscoring Visa's efforts to empower more women athletes and shift the paradigm of brands backing the development and programming of women's sports.
Social Impact: In addition to excelling in their sport, many Team Visa Athletes advocate for organizations that help to positively impact their local communities. Canada'sAndre De Grasse (Athletics) established the Andre De Grasse Family Foundation, committed to empowering youth to realize their dreams through access to sport, education and mentorship. Alison Cerutti (Beach Volleyball, Brazil) has an organization in Brazil that helps give underserved children in his community access to sports, health services and more.
Small Business: Visa is a true advocate for the 30 million small businesses in the U.S. and extends that commitment to its Team Visa athletes. From 19-year-old Poppy Starr Olsen (Skateboarding, Australia), an artist and jewelry maker who has leveraged her business to fund her athletic career, to Megan Rapinoe(Football, USA), whose on-field passion is matched by a commitment to growing her purposeful fashion company, Visa is dedicated to supporting athletes in their businesses endeavors.
About Visa Inc. Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) is a world leader in digital payments. Our mission is to connect the world through an innovative, reliable and secure payment network - enabling individuals, businesses and economies to thrive. Our advanced global processing network, VisaNet, provides secure and reliable payments around the world, and is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second. The company's relentless focus on innovation is a catalyst for the rapid growth of connected commerce on any device, and a driving force behind the dream of a cashless future for everyone, everywhere. As the world moves from analog to digital, Visa is applying our brand, products, people, network and scale to reshape the future of commerce.