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Report: ‘Hardly any sign of life’ from Pineau’s B&B team with presentation cancelled and ‘nothing signed yet’

Doubts continue as L'Équipe speculates on budget and sources that claim no sponsor contracts have been signed yet.

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A report in L’Équipe has highlighted several major concerns over the future of Jerome Pineau’s B&B team after the French squad canceled plans to hold a press conference in Paris on Wednesday.

According to L’Équipe’s sources, none of the potential sponsorship contracts have been signed yet, as the team struggles to meet UCI deadlines.

The team presentation was meant to come a day before ASO unveiled the 2023 Tour de France route with both the men’s and women’s teams announced in Paris. But on Monday, and without any warning, the team decided to pull the planned event from the calendar, citing the”‘absence of some of the main stakeholders in the 2023 team’s project.”

Also read: Cavendish’s potential team for 2023 cancels planned press conference

Several riders have been strongly linked to the team, with Mark Cavendish reportedly signing a one-year deal with an option of a second.

The cycling rider agency SEG has been recruiting several riders for the men’s team with Cees Bol and Nick Shultz – both on SEG’s books – meant to be going to the French team but the news of the canceled press conference comes less than a week after the UCI announced that Pineau’s management had failed to make the first deadline for the submission of the team’s paperwork.

That news in itself was surprising, especially given the fact that the team had only days earlier claimed to VeloNews that the bank guarantee and relevant paperwork had been submitted on time.

In a report on Tuesday, L’Équipe provided an update, stating that “since the day of the arrival of the Tour on the Champs-Élysées and the announcement of the association of the City of Paris with its professional team from 2023, Jérôme Pineau has hardly given any sign of life.”

“Two months later, nobody really knows if things are moving in the right direction and no official communication has been made on the subject,” the respected French publication continues.

The report goes on to state that French businessman Didier Quillot is part of the structure of the operation and that together with Pineau a company listed as Paris Cycling Club was created.

According to the paper, B&B Hotels is in the running to provide 3 million Euros for the project and the best-case scenario would see the team raise around 15 million Euros in sponsorship from partners associated with the City of Paris and the Olympic Games. Those level of funds would be more than enough to run a men’s ProTour team but there is also the launch of the women’s team to consider, and the renewals of several riders on the current men’s roster.

“But business is complicated. The negotiations would today revolve around a global budget of fifteen million euros in the best case, including the future women’s team. But nothing seems signed yet,” L’Équipe says.

“In terms of potential investors, the names of the firms Amazon France, Carrefour or Cdiscount have largely fueled the rumor in recent weeks. Nothing should work out. According to our information, the most serious track today leads to Engie, supplier of natural gas and green electricity, while that of Enedis, manager of the French electricity distribution network, is rumored.”