SBD/April 29, 2013/Marketing and Sponsorship

Panthers QB Cam Newton Giving Heavy Input On New Clothing Line At Belk

Newton worked to ensure his eponymous clothing line features plenty of color
Panthers QB Cam Newton acknowledges that he is “not literally sketching looks" for his new clothing line at Charlotte-based Belk department store, but said that he “gives lots of input on things like color palettes, pattern designs and even details like choosing the right buttons or zippers,” according to a front-page piece by Cristina Bolling of the CHARLOTTE OBSERVER. The MADE Cam Newton line is rolling out at 133 Belk stores and belk.com and "encompasses everything from suits and ties to T-shirts and jeans -- more than 60 products.” Belk execs said that never in the company’s 125-year history has it "partnered with a pro athlete on an entire apparel line.” Newton is “big on making sure the line has plenty of color.” He said, “You would be surprised by the things I’ve said yes and no to. Anytime your name is on something or you are affiliated with something, you want it to come out with a bang and say, ‘This is my clothing line. This is how it looks and I feel great in it.’” Univ. of Oregon marketing professor T. Bettina Cornwell said that Newton is “part of a growing trend of celebrities ‘creating’ their own products.” Cornwell said that companies “research a celebrity, and initial contracts like the one between Newton and Belk typically range from three to five years, with the option of extending the contract.” Newton and officials from Belk said that the “oversight that Newton has over every product that bears his name is real.” Belk Exec VP/Private Brands John Thomas said that talks between the company and Newton “started about a year ago” (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 4/29).
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