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Volume 25 No. 196
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Federer's Attraction To Uniqlo In Part Due To Post-Playing Plans

Uniqlo sees Federer as a brand off the court as much as on it, and is incorporating him into lifestyle products
Photo: GETTY IMAGES

Roger Federer said that the decision to end his 20-year association with Nike and embark on a new chapter with Uniqlo was "influenced by the Japanese clothing company’s commitment to stay with him long after his playing days are over," according to Jack Tarrant of REUTERS. Federer said that the "belief shown in him" by Uniqlo CEO Tadashi Yanai and Exec Creative Dir John Jay "had been key." Federer: "John Jay in New York, where I had an event there, said it very nicely: ‘One day I will retire from tennis but I will not retire from life.'" Tarrant noted by incorporating Federer in its LifeWear range, Uniqlo appears to see him as a "brand off court as much as on it." One of Federer’s goals after he retires is to "develop the charity work started through his foundation, which aims to empower children in poverty through education, and he said Uniqlo shared that vision" (REUTERS, 10/2). WOMEN'S WEAR DAILY's Kelly Wetherille notes Federer "worked closely with Uniqlo’s design team to create the game wear he debuted at Wimbledon" this summer. Federer said that he is "looking forward to becoming even more involved in future collections." He added, "I love working on details, and also trying out new things, so that’s what we’re going to go back to the drawing board for next year." Meanwhile, Uniqlo said that it was "organizing an exhibition match that Federer will play sometime next year in Japan" (WWD.com, 10/2).