Italian Sportwear Brand Tacchini Planning Djokovic-Branded Line Of Apparel
Italian sportswear brand Tacchini is "planning a big push" around No. 1-ranked tennis player Novak Djokovic, including a line of Djokovic-branded casual sportswear, and window displays and advertisements in the more than 100 Tacchini stores worldwide," according to Sam Mamudi of MARKETWATCH. Djokovic has a "rich tennis history, having sponsored many of the sport's legends, including John McEnroe, Jimmy Connors and a young Pete Sampras," but Djokovic is the only player currently endorsing the brand. The company signed Djokovic to a 10-year deal in November '09 when he was ranked fourth, and company Sports Marketing Manager Edoardo Artaldi said, "We felt Novak had the potential to reach the top." Leverage Agency Founder & CEO Ben Sturner said Tacchini's "gamble with Djokovic paid off." Sturner: "A company that size has to be creative. They can't afford to sign 10 to 15 top players; they need to focus on one or two." Mamudi noted Djokovic's Serbian nationality "means his base of support isn't naturally as broad" as Rafael Nadal or Andy Murray. That "may have been what pushed adidas to go with Murray" rather than Djokovic. Artaldi said that adidas "had a choice between Murray and Djokovic and picked the Scotsman." Artaldi "wouldn't say how much Tacchini pays Djokovic." But he said that, "as well as incentive bonuses linked to tournament wins and end-of-year rankings, the player receives a share of all Tacchini revenue from sales in China, and worldwide revenue from Djokovic-branded Tacchini products." Artaldi added that the company's sales "have risen along with Djokovic's success," though he did not provide details (MARKETWATCH.com, 7/27).