Arsenal signs Puma deal after 20 years with Nike

English Premier League’s Arsenal Football Club announced it is switching kit maker from American firm Nike to German company Puma.

Nike had been making Arsenal’s kit since 1994.

The Puma deal is said to be worth over £30m annually.

It officially becomes the kit supplier from the beginning of July, 2014. With the current transfer window closing at the end of this week, it will be interesting to see what Arsenal does with this cash boost.

Before 1994 Arsenal’s kit was made by Umbro.

Gaining Arsenal is a major coup for Puma

Puma is also kit maker for two other Premier League clubs – Newcastle United and Cardiff City. For Puma’s new CEO, Bjoern Gulden, who arrived on July 1st, 2013, gaining Arsenal, the current leaders of the Premier League, is seen as a major coup.

Puma has also acquired wide-ranging worldwide licensing rights to develop other merchandise with the Arsenal branding. According to a press release issued by Puma, “This new commercial partnership represents the biggest deal in PUMA and Arsenal’s history.”

Bjoern Gulden said:

“Arsenal have been a key strategic target for PUMA for a number of years now. Through a clear commercial vision, a well-defined sports marketing strategy and a relentless enthusiasm within the PUMA organisation, we’re proud to have signed this partnership with a truly global football club.”

“As we enter a new era in our company history, Arsenal represents a major commercial and marketing opportunity to reinforce PUMA’s credibility as a global sports brand, and we have full confidence the plans in place to activate this partnership will have a significant global impact.”

The term ‘marketing strategy’ refers to a company’s marketing goals and objectives, all combined into one plan.

Gulden says Puma is defining itself at the clear number 3 football brand. The company is also the official kit partner with Germany’s Borussia Dortmund, the Italian national team, as well as Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt and golfer Rickie Fowler.

Arsenal FC’s CEO, Ivan Gazidis, said:

“We are excited to be partnering with PUMA, a company whose football heritage and record of innovation have a strong affinity with our own. This represents another important step forward in Arsenal’s progression on and off the pitch.”

About Puma and Gulden

Sportswear group Puma is part of Kering SA which also owns the Yves Saint Laurent and Gucci brands. Approximately one third of Kering’s sales come from Puma.

Puma is undergoing a major reorganization process that has cost the company more than €310 million over the past two years. It was acquired by Kering (formerly known as PPR SA) in 2007 for €5.3 billion.

Björn Gulden was once a professional footballer (soccer player), playing for FC Nürnberg in the German Bundesliga (Federal Leagues) in 1984-1985, and Senior Vice President of Apparel and Accessories at Adidas AG.

About Arsenal Football Club

Arsenal Football Club, also known as “the gunners”, was founded in 1886 in Woolwich, London. It became the first club in the south of England to join the Football League in 1893.

Today Arsenal is based in Holloway, north London.

Arsenal is one of England’s most successful football clubs, having won 13 First Division and Premier League Titles and 10 FA Cups.

It is among the ten most valuable football clubs in the world.