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Our Commitment

TO DIVERSITY, INCLUSION AND GREATER EQUALITY

Rapha exists to make cycling the most popular sport in the world. In everything we do, from the clothing we design to the stories we tell to the communities we celebrate, we have attempted to portray our deep and honest love for the sport. We are all cyclists, our staff draw immense inspiration from all those who ride a bike and we are each motivated by connecting riders all over the world.

But if we are ever to fulfil that purpose, if we are ever to create a truly global, popular sport that embraces everyone, we must first acknowledge that too little has been done to promote its diversity and to encourage participation in diverse communities. In our sincere attempts to promote and grow cycling, it is clear that we have not done enough to challenge the traditional image of our sport and that more can be done to ensure our own internal culture represents a true reflection of society. Rapha believes that cycling has the power to transform the lives of any one in the world, regardless of colour, creed, class, gender or sexuality and we have taken the time to reckon with the reality that we have not done enough to truly demonstrate that power.

Both internally and externally, there is much more we can do to promote and support diversity in a sport that is still too easily characterised as white, privileged and exclusive, and to foster equality as well as inclusion. To that end, we today make the following tangible and measurable commitments to creating and presenting a more diverse and inclusive sport:

1.Internal culture: We have committed to a series of initiatives, using existing internal resources as well as external support, to ensure our own employees feel supported and every member of staff is educated on the issues surrounding diversity, representation and equality in our industry. We have also begun the process of commissioning an external consultant to evaluate our internal culture and hiring practices. This will include the foundation of an employee resource group (ERG) comprised of a diverse and representative group of employees to provide an internal support network for staff, to ensure diversity in recruitment, retention and promotion, and to incorporate a broad cross-section of opinions in cultural and brand decisions.

2.Investment in the sport: Working to promote diversity in the broader sport, Rapha will also commit additional funding to actively invest in diversity in cycling. The Rapha Foundation invests $1.5m annually to support underrepresented cycling communities around the world. Going forward we will commit to investing $1m of that annual funding to specifically support Black, Asian, minority ethnic (BAME) and female focused programs and initiatives. In 2021, Rapha will allocate at least 50% of our athlete sponsorship investment to support a more diverse spectrum of athletes, specifically BAME and LGBTQ+ cyclists as well as female teams and riders at the highest level of the sport, and commit to directing an equal proportion of our investment in associated content around those athletes and their stories.

3. Representation and inspiration: As well as working internally, and ensuring the above ERG is heard in internal marketing and brand decision-making, in 2020 we will also commission an external, expert-led review of our brand activity to better understand how we can best represent more diverse riding communities. That review will report objectively on the current representation of BAME, women and LGBTQ+ groups and cultures within our communications, content and campaigns, and we commit to actioning the recommendations inspired by that audit.

In formalising our adherence to these commitments, it is important that we are more transparent as a brand and are regularly held accountable for promoting and representing diversity within the sport. We will therefore create a diversity advisory group, made up of internal and external representatives with a variety of ethnic backgrounds, genders and sexualities from within the sport, to guide and critique our work in each of these four areas. Starting in 2021, that group will create and publish externally an annual diversity performance report analysing Rapha’s progress in promoting diversity in cycling through our own internal structure, our investments and our brand activity.

In further increasing the transparency around our purpose, we have begun work on a series of public resources available for our staff and to be published on rapha.cc as well as in our clubhouse network, outlining our commitments and activities in promoting better representation for people of all backgrounds in cycling. These will be published in more detail as soon as possible.

As a brand with community at our heart, we will also take the time to listen and learn from you all, starting now. For any immediate questions or thoughts regarding this statement, please contact us using the link below.


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