For the last two years, KPMG has been a proud supporter of the Flanders Classics elite women races. This year, we are excited to support this iconic race series again, a project that fits seamlessly with our values, and embark on our third year of collaboration with Flanders Classics Women.
In February 2020, the Flanders Classics Women - Closing the Gap was launched, as a multi-year plan to support women's cycling with additional funds to help professionalize the sport. KPMG and Flanders Classics' Women share the same goal: to increase the representation of women and improve their performance - both in the boardroom, in decisions and deals, and on the cycling track.
At KPMG, we are constantly looking for ways to encourage and promote initiatives that help close the gap, both through our internal initiatives - including our leadership networks and mentoring program - and through sponsorships and partnerships with organizations, such as Flanders Classics, that share these core values. Partnering with Flanders Classics is therefore very meaningful to us. It's more than just supporting and promoting women's cycling, it's also about supporting young talent, laying the groundwork, to help give women's cycling the attention it deserves. With this project we want to send a clear message to young, female cycling talent: there is a future for you.
Collective investment of 1 million euros over the last two years
Fast forward to 2022, Flanders Classics and KPMG can proudly look back on the successful steps the sport has been able to take thanks to this collaboration. In the last two years, collective investments from KPMG and other partners have been used to equalize the prize money between men and women’s races. Moreover, Flanders Classics has also worked to increase media visibility for women’s races—an important component of elevating women’s cycling in the world stage.
Equal prize money Tour of Flanders
In recent seasons, Flanders Classics has focused on category increases in its races, like the first-ever Scheldeprijs for women, and the current course changes in the Tour of Flanders and Gent-Wevelgem is drawing the map to sporting equality.
The next step is logical, which is the equalization of prize money. In addition to category increases from Dwars door, Vlaanderen and De Brabantse Pijl to ProSeries and further betting on live TV coverage, the winner in this year's Ronde van Vlaanderen for Women will receive the same prize money as men. The intention remains, as proposed in the multi-year plan, to then equalize all prize money in 2023.
Tour of Flanders youth day
In 2022, Flanders Classics is also putting extra effort into the youth. On May 22, the very first Ronde van Vlaanderen youth day in Oudenaarde will take place. For the first time, races for U17 and U19 women will take place. KPMG fully supports and applauds Flanders’ Classics ongoing commitment for next generation of cycling champions. As a firm filled with young talented employees, we know that attracting young promising talents, and ensuring an environment filled with support, education and visibility also guarantees success.
With these new developments, Flanders Classics and KPMG are on the eve of a new season, in which for the first time since this partnership, the race can be enjoyed together. We are excited to meet you all on Saturday 26 February in Ghent for the kick-off of the spring season with Omloop Het Nieuwsblad.