Arsenal and PUMA have agreed to a five-year deal that will see the brand become the club’s exclusive jersey supplier, the two parties announced today at a press conference at Emirates Stadium.
The agreement is worth $250 million. PUMA follows Nike, which created Gunners kits for two decades, starting on July 1, when next season’s shirts can be revealed publically. PUMA will also produce other branded merchandise, including replica and lifestyle items (long, puffy coats for Arsene Wenger, no doubt) as part of the arrangement.
Both sides expressed excitement today, as the long-rumored deal was finally made official.
“Arsenal have been a key strategic target for PUMA for a number of years now,” PUMA CEO Björn Gulden said in a stement.
“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.”
Added Arsenal CEO Ivan Gazidis, “We are excited to be partnering with PUMA, a company whose football heritage and record of innovation have a strong affinity with out own. This represents another important step forward in Arsenal’s progression on and off the pitch.”
Arsenal is, by far, PUMA’s highest profile signing in England. They already supply shirts for Newcastle United and Cardiff City at Premier League level. In Germany, where the brand is based, they work with Borussia Dortmund, and PUMA teams Italy, Switzerland, Uruguay, Chile, Ivory Coast, Cameroon and Ghana will feature prominently at the 2014 FIFA World Cup™
Though it will be next year before we see Arsenal players proudly sporting PUMA shirts, shorts and socks, five Gunner stars—striker Olivier Giroud, creative midfielders Santi Cazorla and Tomáš Rosický, vice captain Mikel Arteta and steady right back Bacary Sagna—all wear PUMA cleats.
Former Arsenal elites Thierry Henry and Cesc Fabregas also are PUMA athletes and join Sagna in wearing the evoPOWER, the latest innovation in soccer footwear.
What do you think of Arsenal and PUMA’s deal? What are your hopes for next season’s jerseys? Leave us some thoughts in the comments section below.