Novak has been appointed a global brand Ambassador of one of the world’s most prestigious brands, the Japanese clothing and sports equipment manufacturer UNIQLO.
Djokovic signed a 5-year sponsorship deal and will wear his new outfit for the first time at the second Grand Slam of the season, Roland Garros, which begins on May 27.
The partnership, which takes effect from today, will see the world’s top-ranked player promoting the UNIQLO brand and UNIQLO clothing worldwide. It will also include collaboration on future product lines, as well as co-developing the ultimate UNIQLO functional wear.
Tadashi Yanai, Chairman, President & CEO of leading global Japanese retailer Fast Retailing, commented on today’s announcement saying, “We are extremely pleased to have Novak Djokovic become UNIQLO’s global brand ambassador. We will use the most innovative fabrics and technologies to develop match wear that can contribute to the performance of a globally recognized and respected sports person like Novak. At the same time, UNIQLO will incorporate latest fabrics and technologies to co-develop with him the ultimate functional apparel that can be worn, and enjoyed, by people all over the world.”
Yanai added, “UNIQLO and Novak share a common, mutual desire to improve people’s lives and contribute to society. In addition to creating truly great clothing with new and unique value, Fast Retailing takes to heart our mission to enrich people’s lives through unique corporate activities and to grow our company in unity with society. We look forward to collaborating with Novak on a number of corporate social responsibility programs around the world.”
Commenting on today’s announcement, Novak said: “I am honored, and also very excited, to have been appointed as the UNIQLO global brand ambassador. UNIQLO is a cool brand with strong roots in Japan, a country whose culture and way of life I respect. I have a personal philosophy which I call ‘Be Unique,’ and this is based on my strong passion, drive and eagerness to keep improving myself. I am passionate about being the best possible tennis player, as well as the best possible person, and I have a continuous desire to help people, especially children, who have been less fortunate than me.”
Tadashi Yanai has devoted his life to helping others to support socially vulnerable people. He received great recognition in Japan for his contribution for earthquake victims. He will now join forces with Novak whose Foundation has been helping underprivileged children, making efforts to make a difference in their lives.
In launching the new partnership between UNIQLO and Novak today, UNIQLO confirms that as its first corporate social responsibility activity it will manufacture a custom-designed charity UT (UNIQLO T-shirt) to sell at a select number of UNIQLO stores and online. Proceeds from the sale of this UT will be donated to the Novak Djokovic Foundation to support children’s programs. Details regarding the design of the UT, as well as timing and location of sale will be announced in due course.
“I feel a natural connection with UNIQLO. To me, UNIQLO is not fast fashion, and it’s not sports wear. UNIQLO is the ultimate functional wear, which is exactly what I need as both a sports person and an individual who leads a very active life. I look forward to collaborating with UNIQLO in the development of new products and to getting to know the global UNIQLO family better,” Novak added.
UNIQLO is a brand of Fast Retailing Co. (FR), a leading global Japanese retail holding company that designs, manufactures and sells clothing under five brands: Comptoir des Cotonniers, g.u., Princesse tam.tam, Theory, and UNIQLO. Their competitors are not sports brands, but brands like H&M, Zara and others. UNIQLO is not primarily a manufacturer of sports equipment. Special sports line they develop is for tennis, and along with the world no.1 player it is also promoted by no.1 Japan’s star Kei Nishikori. As their global brand ambassador, Novak will wear sports outfit, but also casual UNIQLO models, spring/summer, fall/winter…
Today UNIQLO has more than 1,100 stores worldwide, namely in the USA, UK, France, Russia, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Korea, as well as Japan. UNIQLO continues to open large-scale stores in some of the world’s most important cities and locations, as part of its ongoing efforts to solidify its status as a truly global brand. They see Novak as an ideal ambassador who will introduce their brand to new markets.
Novak and Sergio Tacchini mutually parted ways after the Masters tournament in Rome.
“It has been mutually and amicably decided that, as of the 2012 Roland Garros Grand Slam, Novak Djokovic will no longer be the brand ambassador,” the Italian company said in a statement.