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New Balance kits

yiannos33

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Hope they start a bidding war. Better for the club.
I do agree that Nike has a better distribution than NB.
I always go to any New Balance store when the wife and I go shopping to see if any Lfc kits or merchandise
are in stock, but to my surprise none are. I always complain to the manager but their answer is go on line.
 


Red_Jedi

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I've liked the New Balance kits overall, but must say that the availability of some kits is shocking.

The current GK kit sold out within a few days and been on back order since. Went to the store at Anfield on Opening day (Norwich) to buy my daughter the long sleeve 3rd kit (she's junior size) - but guess what - no stock. Ended up buying it online from LFC store - but made the purchase outside the clubstore - how stupid is that?

New Balance simply haven't kept up with demand - their supply chain won't be as well oiled as Nike. And they can't adjust production as quickly as Nike. I don't own any Nike gear, don't really like it - but this to me is a commercial decision, and the bigger brands suit us better - end of the day, I'm sure the courts will favour LFC as its our Shirt end of the day - and if NB lose out, its not like they are in a loss.

But quite frankly, NB haven't delivered from a supply perspective.
 

Zoran

Fighting like beavers.
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I like Adidas stuff as well, but the club was poorly treated towards the end of our last deal. I don’t think we’d go there

Besides, I don’t think they could afford another big contract.
More importantly, I think Adidas being with United makes it less probable, hence it opened up a possibility for Nike to have a first go with us. I don't think it's totally impossible that we see Adidas again sometime in the future, when United moves to something else. We're the top two brands in England and there are not many options for clubs of that size. It all changes and rotates through years and decades.
 

Hope in your heart

Loyalty and patience, two undervalued concepts.
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I'm a bit torn on this. I despise Nike for several reasons I've already outlined before, so won't get over this again.

On the other hand, NB, while they have done outstanding work with some of their shirts, are a bit amateurish by all accounts and don't seem to be able to exploit the full potential of where we are now in terms of world-wide popularity. Nike would be able to exploit it far better probably. Then you have the influence they exert on some top top players. That must have an influence too for those at LFC who have to decide.

But still... I don't think I'll buy a Nike shirt if they end up being Liverpool's shirt provider. I know I'll be alone with this stance, so it doesn't matter much.
 

Jaytinho

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Been loving the new retro strips that Nike have been doing for this season. Inter's third is so fire. I see United get specific attention by Adidas when it comes to their kits, to me it comes with the money bracket of the deals. If we get a ridiculous amount from Nike, and given our current status in England and Europe, we should get special attention from Nike when it comes to kits
 



RedYank

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I'm a bit torn on this. I despise Nike for several reasons I've already outlined before, so won't get over this again.

On the other hand, NB, while they have done outstanding work with some of their shirts, are a bit amateurish by all accounts and don't seem to be able to exploit the full potential of where we are now in terms of world-wide popularity. Nike would be able to exploit it far better probably. Then you have the influence they exert on some top top players. That must have an influence too for those at LFC who have to decide.

But still... I don't think I'll buy a Nike shirt if they end up being Liverpool's shirt provider. I know I'll be alone with this stance, so it doesn't matter much.
You would have more companions than you might think.
 

gasband

The Singaporean Liverpool Never Managed To Sign
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Other than it benefits the club, it doesnt matter to me who provides the kit because they never made it big enough for me...........
 



T.C.B

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I generally avoid buying anything made by Nike for all the obvious reasons. I have often found Nike gear to be of questionable quality. I love the last 2 New balance home kits but I'm not keen on some of the other designs to be honest. At the end of the day I hope the club goes with what's best from a commercial standpoint.
 

Speckydodge

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Neukolln

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According to Footyheadlines:


Green away
That does look like what was leaked earlier this Summer, there was talk that this year's third would be the green from the shield. All that said, I would be thrilled if next season's away or third shirts were indeed green. I have been wanting to see that color mixed in. I would even like to see the early 80s yellow make a return.
 

mattyhurst

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I doubt they would have confirmed a kit considering an agreement hasn't yet been finalised, at best they would be prototypes for design.
 



lfc.8

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As for the new deal, we should be doing better than £75m with what Manchester United achieved way back in 2014. The club has greatly improved plus the effect of inflation.
 

nobluff

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New Balance isn’t even on the map when It comes to comparing sporting brands. We basically doing them a favour by helping spread the word.
 



Red_Jedi

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It’s £30m guaranteed plus another 20% of all sales.

So if a million shirts are sold, that’s 20% of £60m.

That’s just shirts. There’s all the other gear. I wouldn’t be surprised if global sales would be £300m - 20% of that would be £60m on top of £30m....
 

smythyp

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It’s £30m guaranteed plus another 20% of all sales.

So if a million shirts are sold, that’s 20% of £60m.

That’s just shirts. There’s all the other gear. I wouldn’t be surprised if global sales would be £300m - 20% of that would be £60m on top of £30m....
Seems like a very low basic @ 30m :-( but if nike are maybe guaranteeing a minimum commission per yr. of say 40m then that would make sense. Loved the nb designs, but have been annoyed with availability at times.

Reckon we will have to trust the LFC execs. - their financial decisions haven’t been too bad, remember that little lad we sold to Barca, and what we did with the cash..?? ;-)))
 

treboeth

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Seems like a very low basic @ 30m :-( but if nike are maybe guaranteeing a minimum commission per yr. of say 40m then that would make sense. Loved the nb designs, but have been annoyed with availability at times.

Reckon we will have to trust the LFC execs. - their financial decisions haven’t been too bad, remember that little lad we sold to Barca, and what we did with the cash..?? ;-)))
They signed Brendan as well :unsure:

Do you want to retract that apology in your other post ;)
 



gasband

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When Adidas took over Man U sponsorship few years ago, they projected they can earn 1.5b over 10 years. In current context and our global fanbase, that number between 1.5-2b for 10 years should easily apply to us too.
 

Zoran

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Revealed: The battle for supremacy in Premier League kit wars

In 2012, Adidas boss Herbert Hainer said Liverpool’s perception of their worth was “not in the right balance” with their results on the pitch. The German sportswear giant walked away from renewing a kit deal worth around £12 million a year and Liverpool swapped the three stripes for the ‘W’ of Warrior Sports. The club might have doubled their money but it was still a slap in the face for the status-conscious Anfield faithful.

Adidas had once waged a decade-long campaign to win the Liverpool kit contract from Umbro but turned down the chance to renew a deal because, as Hainer put it, “there was a gap between their performance on the field and what the numbers should be”.

Fast-forward some seven years, two Champions League finals and millions of shirt sales later, and the reigning European champions and Premier League leaders want to underline their new status with a Nike makeover. As The Athletic revealed last week, Liverpool are going to the High Court to try to push through ditching the New Balance threads they have worn since 2015. The Boston-based brand argue it has a matching rights clause — and are prepared to use it.

The Liverpool case, scheduled for a three-day trial from October 18, has highlighted a significant shift in football’s kit-supply game. In the Premier League, it has become a two-tier system between the “haves and the have-nots”.

The traditional top six have benefited from bumper kit deals in recent years. Manchester United remain the front-runners (£75 million a year, Adidas), but Manchester City (£65 million, Puma), Chelsea (£60 million, Nike), Arsenal (£60 million, Adidas) and Tottenham Hotspur (£30 million, Nike) are not far behind. Chelsea paid Adidas a hefty severance fee in 2017 to end their 10-year tie-up six years early so they could double their money with Nike.

Clubs below the top six or so, though, are not getting the same concessions from Adidas or Nike. They are probably not even getting the chance to deal directly with Adidas or Nike. Kit deals for the smaller Premier League clubs are worth only a couple of million pounds each season. Many remain undisclosed as they are only six-figure sums.

This is the case throughout world football. In Italy, for example, AC Milan had worn Adidas kit for decades but when the Juventus contract came up, Adidas jumped at the chance to clothe one of Europe’s elite clubs — a gang Milan used to run with but now are chasing to catch up.

Deserted by Adidas, Milan turned to its historic rival Puma — the companies were formed in a small town in Bavaria in the late 1940s when two brothers fell out — and now account for half of Puma’s shirt sales in Italy. Not bad but not Juve, whose shirts sell all over the world.

“Most of the time, these changes happen because somebody’s head gets turned by cash,” said a leading British sports lawyer who has advised several athletes and clubs on their kit deals.

“The clubs and the companies talk a lot about loyalty but there’s a lot of opportunism.”

He explained that Adidas would have been driven by the desire to land one of the top shirts in one of Europe’s key markets.

“It would not have been overly worried about the Italian market on its own – the decision to drop Milan and get Juve would have been made at headquarters and then given to the regional office to implement,” he said.

“Nike and Puma think in the same way. They want the biggest club they can get in England, France, Germany, Italy and Spain, and they know they probably cannot afford the market-leader in each of those countries so they’ll fight to have two or three and then the best of the rest.”

Puma was desperate to have a big club in the north-west, which it views as the powerhouse of English football and is why it left a deal with Arsenal and partnered with City. It had a couple of their players already signed up but are now targeting more and several up-and-coming stars from the champions’ youth team.

In Serie A, Inter Milan and Roma wear Nike, Napoli are with Kappa, Lazio are dressed by Italian firm Macron and Atalanta, last season’s surprise package, are wrapped up by Spanish firm Joma.

Former Manchester United commercial director Andy Anson told The Athletic: “The market has completely changed in the last few years with the big two brands, Adidas and Nike, only really interested in perhaps the top six of the Premier League and the leading sides on the continent.
“They are stretching away from the rest in terms of the size of these deals, which are increasingly just straightforward marketing plays by the manufacturers, much like they would have with a major star.

“The next tier of clubs are not being fought over by the big brands, so their cheques aren’t getting bigger, and they’re also not getting the concessions the top clubs get.

“The kit supply market has become perhaps the starkest measure of a club’s status. It really does boil down to the haves and the have-nots.”
Of course, there are lots of teams further down the ladder than seventh in the Premier League wearing Adidas or Nike. They may even be selling branded leisurewear in the club shop but it is likely to have come via a distributor.

This is why so many of those kits have a generic, ‘from-the-catalogue’ look about them.

For example, the design of Wolverhampton Wanderers’ current Adidas home strip is identical – but for its colour scheme – to the away strips of Sheffield United and Watford, while Leicester’s striking pink away shirt isn’t a bespoke creation but a readily-available teamwear template.

It is also why those deals tend to be shorter, with clubs on the up eager to test the market and distributors wary of tying themselves to clubs on the turn.

The volatility of this market does give the likes of Errea, Kappa, Le Coq Sportif, Macron, Umbro, Under Armour and other smaller players a chance to pick up business and build their profiles, but these deals are often done by middle-men and third-party suppliers.

Anson is a former chief executive of Kitbag, the British online sports retailer bought by its bigger American rival Fanatics in 2016.

“We acquired the rights to Everton’s kit deal and we sold it on to Le Coq Sportif,” he says. “I remember (the then Everton manager) David Moyes asked me, ‘Who has ever won anything in Le Coq Sportif?’ I said ‘Diego Maradona’ but he wasn’t very impressed.”

In 2015, Stoke City, then in the Premier League, chose not to renew with New Balance when the American firm took over the football contracts from Warrior, as they thought they were worth much more than the £2.5 million being offered. The then-Premier League side, however, were disappointed as the big guns stayed silent and they had to settle for a £3 million offer from Macron.

“There are very few clubs Adidas and Nike would get into a head-to-head battle for because there are not many shirts iconic enough to make a big brand statement,” said sports business journalist and consultant Richard Gillis.

“Once you get below those mega-clubs, these deals are simply licensing agreements and the rule of thumb used to be that the size of your upfront payment would depend on your average gate.”

Adidas, Nike and Puma, the market’s third biggest player, treat the mega-club deals like their links with top athletes. This explains why they appear not to worry too much about the fact a club’s superstar might be a rival’s ambassador.

Cristiano Ronaldo is a Nike player on an Adidas team, Juventus. At Barcelona, Lionel Messi is an Adidas athlete on a Nike team.

Spencer Nolan, from data firm Nielsen Sports, said most companies realise even trying to get a star player’s boot and shirt contracts aligned is just too “tricky” — and that is before you even consider the fact they could wear a different brand for their national team.

Anson, who is just about to begin a new role as chief executive of the British Olympic Association, joined United soon after they had started their groundbreaking deal with Nike, worth £303 million over 13 years.

The standard kit deal then was a licensing agreement, with the club selling the right to flog replica kits in return for the biggest minimum annual payment it could negotiate plus potential royalties.

It was a business model that had not changed much since Admiral first put its logo on Leeds United shirts in the 1970s. But what Manchester United did with Nike in 2002 was set up a joint venture, with the new company responsible for all of their official merchandise, from bedspreads to bobble hats.

Sports marketing expert Tim Crow told The Athletic: “Peter Kenyon (United’s then-CEO) realised he had a warehouse full of crap nobody wanted, so he decided to let somebody else take over the merchandising operation. It was very clever.

“I actually did the first deal with them, as I was helping Wilkinson Sword at the time and we were having a tough time competing with Gillette. I asked United if they wanted to get into the razor business and, before long, we were selling branded razors and shaving foam in 22 countries.”

The arrangement was so lucrative for Nike — at one point, the United Megastore was earning more money than its own flagship store in New York — it took the template and replicated it at Barcelona, Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain.

But United then changed the model again in 2014 with their blockbusting Adidas deal.

“I don’t agree with much the Glazers have done since taking over at United but they were right about the Nike deal being too good for Nike, as they were getting all the exposure of their brand on United merchandise for relatively little,” said Anson.

“United did really well with the Adidas deal because they got more money up front and clawed back a lot of those ancillary rights. If you go into the megastore now, you’ll see Paul Smith scarves, New Era hats, True Religion jackets…”

New Balance has also done well out of its link with Liverpool — the most recent set of accounts show a 13 per cent rise in turnover — and Jurgen Klopp’s side have benefited from having the undivided attention of their supplier. The fact their dispute has got this far has surprised senior staff at Anfield — and Nike — and threatened to derail plans for a smooth transition.

But, in terms of annual revenue, Nike is eight times bigger than New Balance. The rationale is simple: top club wants to associate itself with the top sportswear company, and vice-versa.

Liverpool are selling the intellectual property of their brand in return for a guaranteed minimum upfront payment and a share of the profits once an agreed sales target is reached. Nike is offering its unrivalled ability to get shirts in shop windows from Seattle to Singapore, as well as a promise to market Liverpool as loudly as it has trumpeted the likes of Michael Jordan, Ronaldo and Tiger Woods. The club get the chance to sell more shirts and the company gets the chance to sell more of everything.

Liverpool have agreed to accept a smaller guaranteed payment from Nike than the £45 million a year New Balance is currently paying, with the upside coming in the royalties split. One source told The Athletic that Nike has not gone beyond a 15 per cent revenue split with a club before but is offering Liverpool 20 per cent. It has also promised to use brand ambassadors such as rap star Drake, basketball’s LeBron James and tennis great Serena Williams to drive sales.

“Liverpool are probably the second best-supported British club around the world because of their success in the 1970s and Eighties,” says Crow. “They have gone to the market at exactly the right time now and they want to kick on and narrow that revenue gap to United. The key is a good distribution partner.

“New Balance hasn’t done a bad job — the last two kits have been best-sellers — but Nike’s sales grew by 27 per cent in China last year. They have spent a lot of time and money building their footprint in China and now have an impressive e-commerce business, too. New Balance can’t compete with that. It’s all about speed and scale. Liverpool know that if they want to convert Chinese fans into customers, they need one of the big two.”

Nike’s swoosh is already on the shirts of Barcelona, Chelsea and Spurs, whereas the calibre of clubs in New Balance’s stable falls a long way after Liverpool and Celtic. Size matters, then.

There is another reason so many sides keep coming back to the bigger, more dependable brands: when you must have 3,000 of next season’s kits ready for sale by June, you want somebody you can trust.

For example, League Two’s Forest Green Rovers cancelled their contract with Hummel last season when the Danish firm, which has made shirts for Aston Villa, Real Madrid and Spurs in the past, failed to deliver the promised home and away kits in time for the start of the campaign. The self-styled most environmentally-friendly football team in the world has now signed up with PlayerLayer, a British start-up that also makes kits out of recycled material for several universities.

Hummel is also at the centre of the kind of expensive stand-off that Liverpool will be desperate to avoid.

Having worn Puma since 2013, Rangers signed with Hummel last season, via English-based sports merchandising firm Elite. They ripped up a deal with Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct that left the Scottish giants with a fraction of the value of each sold shirt. This prompted their fans to boycott the club shop and online operation, both run by Sports Direct.

But Newcastle owner Ashley is nothing if not dogged and the courts have agreed with him that Rangers did not honour his matching right. This has cost the club £450,000 in legal costs already and they may have to cancel their Hummel contract after this season.

FIFA’s clumsy attempt to manoeuvre Mastercard out of the door in 2006 so it could sign a more lucrative deal with Visa is another cautionary tale from the archive. That cost football’s governing body £45 million in damages in 2007.

In Liverpool’s case, it is hoped the previously good relations between owners Fenway Sports Group and New Balance will facilitate a settlement before things get too expensive.

One of the complexities of the dispute is that Liverpool do not think their current supplier are offering to match Nike’s annual up-front payment of £30 million — or even a conservative sales target that would produce a total payment of approximately £70 million. They believe their rediscovered mojo, plus Nike’s clout, equals an annual cheque that could beat United’s £75 million from Adidas.

Whether they get a chance to prove this will depend on the quality of their legal work but it does seem significant it is now Liverpool, and not Manchester United, who are making the more ambitious commercial plays.

According to Deloitte, Liverpool’s income in 2017-18 was £455 million, third in the Premier League behind United’s £590 million and City’s £503 million but ahead of Chelsea’s £448 million, Arsenal’s £389 million and Spurs’ £379 million.

The gap between United and Liverpool — and United and Puma-clad City, for that matter — will be much closer now, though.

Perhaps the best way to understand this month’s court case is to see it as a test of English football’s new balance of power when it comes to what the top teams are wearing on the field.
 
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The Elusive 19th

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Liverpool have agreed to accept a smaller guaranteed payment from Nike than the £45 million a year New Balance is currently paying, with the upside coming in the royalties split. One source told The Athletic that Nike has not gone beyond a 15 per cent revenue split with a club before but is offering Liverpool 20 per cent. It has also promised to use brand ambassadors such as rap star Drake, basketball’s LeBron James and tennis great Serena Williams to drive sales.
20% of how much. Anyone has an idea on how much NB made via LFC merchandise last year.