But CGI's company's website provides the rationale. The draw is the so-called "endurance lifestyle audience" — rich, youngish, and presumably in need of lots of gear since they work out at least four times a week. "They are loyal to the brands that help them achieve these [performance] goals," said the website.
With household incomes of $102,000, "endurance lifestyle" participants can afford the $115 to $380 registration fee for events like this weekend's Philadelphia Insurance Triathlon.
More important, said Kenneth Shropshire, a University of Pennsylvania Wharton School professor specializing in the business of sports, they attract sponsors promoting pricey gear who want more than a name on a water bottle.
Shropshire said that sponsorships typically account for 75 to 90 percent of an event's revenues. Doing the math, that means that this race alone could be worth between $2.1 million to $5.3 million, assuming that the 3,500 participants paid $150 each to register.
Part of Falconhead Capital in New York, CGI, of San Diego, produces September's popular 20,000-runner Rock ‘n' Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon. CGI says seven million athletes are enrolled in its 71 events worldwide.
Contact Jane M. Von Bergen at 215-854-2769, email@example.com or @JaneVonBergen on Twitter. Read her Jobbing blog at www.philly.com/jobbing.