Under Armor announced the launch of the Curry brand on Monday with NBA star Stephen Curry, a longtime Under Armor athlete, to reach younger consumers and compete with Nike and its Jordan brand.
The new line, which launched on CurryBrand.com this week, features shoes and clothing for many sports including basketball and golf. Over time, the brand will be expanded to more categories including Running and Women. Performance basketball shoes will be available on December 11.
“We wanted to make sure that we launched as much as possible at the end of the NBA season … and the fact that we’re launching between Black Friday and the holidays that we think is very fitting , “Told CNBC in an interview under Armor CEO Patrick Frisk.
“It gives Stephen something to really engage with … he will be actively involved in the development of the product,” he said.
Curry, who plays the point guard for the Golden State Warriors, signed with Under Armor in 2013. Curry has won three NBA championships with the Warriors. At age 31, sports analysts called him the greatest shooter in NBA history, with his jersey consistently a top seller.
The introduction of the Curry brand could help Under Armor gain momentum against its rivals, especially with younger consumers, where it has lost ground.
According to Piper Sandler’s biennial survey, Nike has retained its No. 1 spot as a favorite apparel brand among teens for a decade. And for a year now, Under Armor Puppies have been ranked No. 1 on the list of “no longer worn” brands by male teenagers surveyed by Butler.
Nike is still No. 1 in footwear, while Under Armor dropped from ninth to eleventh in the fall of Piper Sandler.
Armor’s brand image has also been hurt by heavy discounts at department stores and other off-price chains. Its brand is typically associated with high-performance traits and intensive activities, but shoppers are mostly looking for fashion when they shop for active clothing, promoting Lululemon and Gap’s atheletes.
In its latest reported quarter, Under Armor sales were up about $ 1.43 billion from a year earlier. In North America, revenue fell 5 percent to $ 963 million, while international sales rose 18 percent to $ 433 million.
Naik has grown its Jordan brand, created for former NBA star Michael Jordan, to bring in more than $ 3.5 billion annually, reaching consumers both young and old. More recently Naik’s focus has been on the expansion of the Jordan brand to reach more women.
Part of the Curry brand’s mission, according to the company and Curry, is to ensure that children have greater access to sports, especially in low-income households. He cited a decline in youth participation that has been compounded by the epidemic as a factor in his decision to focus on the cause.
Starting in Oakland, California, the Curry brand will work with the Oakland Unified School District to introduce basketball to every middle school, and it will join the Positive Coaching Alliance, a non-profit organization, to bring professional coaching to young sportspersons. Will also partner. In area.
“What we want to do is change the game for the good. And this is how Stephen is thinking about it, and we really believe that this is an opportunity for us, ”Frisk said. “So it goes beyond the actual sale of the product. But, product sales are important because we are going to take part of the sales and actually invest back into the program. “
“It’s a new way for us to think about how we can take the initiative financially, and we think it’s an exciting business model as well,” he said.