SBD/August 22, 2017/Marketing and Sponsorship

Georgia Tech Picks Adidas As New Athletic Apparel Partner In Six-Year Deal

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Georgia Tech today announced that Adidas will be the school's "official supplier of team uniforms, apparel, shoes and accessories" through the '24 season, according to JuliaKate Culpepper of the ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION. The six-year partnership is set to take effect July 1, 2018. The only Power Five school under contract with Russell Athletic, Georgia Tech announced in June it would "not renew its contract with its current athletics sponsor" after the '17-18 academic year (AJC.com, 8/22). RIVALS.com's Kelly Quinlan wrote the Adidas partnership is GT AD Todd Stansbury's "first big move." Sources said that Adidas "outbid Nike" for the GT account, offering a "good deal for Georgia Tech athletics going into the next decade." GT joins Indiana, Kansas, Louisville, Miami, Mississippi State, NC State, Nebraska and Texas A&M as "major programs with an Adidas sponsorship" (RIVALS.com, 8/21). Adidas North American President Mark King said that the deal "was vital to the company's strategy of gaining a stronger foothold in the South." The company is "planning a new footwear production facility in Atlanta" (AP, 8/22).

PUSHING AHEAD
: BARRON's Avi Salzman wrote Adidas is "on the way up and Nike is on the way down, and some analysts don’t see that trend changing in the near future." Amid the "overall slowdown" of sneaker sales in the past few months, some companies are "faring better than others." Adidas, which "surged last year as the public latched onto its retro brands like Stan Smith, continues to post strong sales gains in the U.S. and has leveraged that success to sell other kinds of sneakers." Web traffic is also "accelerating at Adidas, and slipping at Nike" (BARRONS.com, 8/21).
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