Marketing Vet Michael Lynch Now On Board As CMO For Surfing Professionals
Tuesday, April 9, 2013 at 03:39AM in Association of Surfing Professionals, Extreme Sports, Michael Lynch, sports marketing

By Barry Janoff

April 7, 2013: Michael Lynch, who spent nearly two decades trying to get people to use their cards, will now try to get people to use their boards.

Lynch, who for 17 years headed Visa’s global sponsorship marketing/management strategy, has been named CMO and chief revenue officer for the Association of Surfing Professionals International.

The move comes on the heals of former NFL marketing executive Paul Speaker being appointed CEO and veteran surfer Kieren Perrow being named interim commissioner for ASP.

According to ASP, Speaker and Lynch will work together "to build surfing’s new global sports league."

ASP said that 2013 "is a transitional year" and that leadership would use this season "to focus on data-gathering, analysis and preparation as they build toward the 2014 ASP World Championship Tour launch."  ASP, which was formed in 1976, is based in Australia and has its U.S. headquarters in Huntington Beach, Calif.

“Michael is a highly respected global marketer, a top influencer in the sports industry and a leader in building brands,” Speaker said in a statement. “His extensive experience and expertise identifying and activating sponsorships with the most recognizable sports properties in the world make him the ideal candidate for the position and an invaluable asset to ASP.  He will play a vital role with ASP as we continue to build our infrastructure and grow the organization to better benefit our surfers, sponsors and fans.”

Lynch will be responsible for "helping the organization optimize its growth potential worldwide and specifically manage all ASP marketing, communications and sponsorship activities for professional surfing’s governing body," per ASP.

“The excitement, passion, energy and entrepreneurial spirit of building a new centralized global sports league with Paul was too much for me to pass up."

Lynch, who has more than 25 years of experience in the sports industry, played a strategic role with Visa in the global marketing strategy and execution in such activations as the Olympic and Paralympic Games, FIFA World Cup and NFL. He left Visa in 2012.

“The excitement, passion, energy and entrepreneurial spirit of building a new centralized global sports league with Paul was too much for me to pass up," Lynch said in a statement. "The ASP’s potential is inspiring and I’m looking forward to working with all those associated with ASP as we deliver the very best world-class experience for the fans, surfers and sponsors.”

The ASP World Championship Tour runs now through Dec. 13, with stops that include Australia, Brazil, Fiji, France, Portugal and Hawaii.

Top men's surfers include Kelly Slater, Mick Fanning, Taj Burrow, Adriano de Souza, Joel Parkinson, Nat Young, Jordy Smith, Michel Bourez and Julian Wilson.

Top women's surfers include Carissa Moore, Tyler Wright, Courtney Conlogue, Sally Fitzgibbons, Stephanie Gilmore, Lakey Peterson and Coco Ho.

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