October 11 – UEFA have added global fashion brand Esprit as the Official Branded Apparel Partner of UEFA Women’s Football in deal running through to 2021.
Last year UEFA separated the commercial sales of its men’s and women’s competitions, and began to build out sponsorship and partnership programmes to promote the women’s game and provide it with its own income stream. Esprit joins other big brand partners Nike and Visa.
“We are delighted to have Esprit on board as our third UEFA Women’s Football Partner. As a brand, Esprit has shown a strong commitment to promoting the role of women in sport as well as a commitment to breaking down gender barriers,” said Guy-Laurent Epstein, marketing director of UEFA Events SA.
“With Esprit becoming the lifestyle partner and supporter of UEFA Women’s Football across our competitions and campaigns, including Together #WePlayStrong, this shows how much potential there is in the women’s game and that it can be supported on its own merits.”
Esprit will supply branded apparel to UEFA staff and volunteers working on site at UEFA women’s competitions, including the UEFA Women’s Champions League final and UEFA Women’s EURO 2021.
Esprit puts female empowerment and breaking stereotypes at the centre of its brand ethos. In June, Esprit launched the ‘WE ALL’ campaign in cooperation with UN Women which raises awareness of the need for gender equality and women’s empowerment. The partnership with UEFA is a continuation of this theme.
Mia Ouakim, Esprit’s chief brand and product officer, said: “Shining a light on unconventional female role models will promote real change. We want to inspire young women to believe in themselves and have the confidence to take different paths.”
The real breakthrough will come when brands and society in general get to grips with the concept that women and girls playing football isn’t an ‘unconventional’ thing to do. For many it isn’t and hasn’t been for a long time.
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