With estimated $1M on the line, Ryan Lochte's sponsors in wait-and-see mode

ByDARREN ROVELL
August 18, 2016, 8:20 PM

— -- Companies that sponsor Ryan Lochte mostly stayed quiet on Thursday, as the tale of Lochte and his teammates getting robbed at gunpoint in Brazil got a bit muddier. The day ended with Brazilian authorities recommending indictments against Lochte and fellow Team USA swimmer Jimmy Feigen for false reporting of a crime.

Of the companies that pay Lochte to endorse their product, only one expressed support. Motokuni Takaoka, founder of Airweave mattress, which signed him in December, told Bloomberg that Lochte will continue to be a spokesman for the brand "as long as our partnership agreement remains effective."

"When I'm sleeping on Airweave, I wake up like I just slept 48 hours straight," reads Lochte's quote on the front of the company website. "I wouldn't go to Rio without it."

Industry sources say that Lochte has only around $1 million worth of deals left. His Speedo agreement, which was a 10-year deal signed in 2006, expires this year.

"Speedo is following the situation, and has a policy not to comment on ongoing legal investigations," the company said in a statement.

The controversy surrounding Lochte, Feigen, and fellow swimmers?Jack Conger and Gunnar Bentz began when they claimed to have been robbed at gunpoint at a gas station in a Rio suburb Sunday morning after a night of partying. The Brazilian police claim the story was fabricated and that the athletes vandalized the gas station's bathroom.

Other deals Lochte has are with Ralph Lauren and Syneron Medical, owner of Gentle Laser Hair Removal, which he has been the face of since late April.

Officials with the two companies did not return multiple requests for comment.

Lochte lists Marriott as a sponsor on his website, but Marriott says it does not currently have an endorsement relationship with Lochte.

Lochte was Ralph Lauren's most prominent Olympic spokesman, having a deal with the official clothing brand that has produced Team USA's opening and closing ceremony outfits since December 2011.

Lochte potentially being in trouble is another nightmare scenario for Speedo, which didn't see their three most promoted athletes win an individual medal in Rio. Lochte's only medal was a gold in the men's 4x200 freestyle relay; Missy Franklin didn't medal, and Cullen Jones didn't even make the team.

Brazilian police maintained Thursday afternoon that Lochte and the three other U.S. swimmers were not robbed, but confirmed that a gun was involved and money changed hands after the swimmers allegedly vandalized a gas station bathroom.

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