Tuesday, December 15, 2009



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Reebok International Limited
Type Subsidiary of Adidas AG[1]
Founded Bolton, England (1895)
Headquarters Canton, Massachusetts, U.S.
Industry Sportswear and Sports Goods
Products Footwear
Website http://www.reebok.com
Reebok world headquarters in Canton (as seen from public roadway through zoom lens)

Reebok International Limited, a subsidiary of German sportswear giant Adidas, is a producer of athletic footwear, apparel, and accessories. The name comes from the Afrikaans spelling of rhebok, a type of African antelope or gazelle. In 1890 in Holcombe Brook, a small village 6 miles from the town Bolton, England, Joseph William Foster was making a living producing regular running shoes when he came up with the idea to create a novelty spiked running shoe. After his ideas progressed he joined with his sons, and founded a shoe company named J.W. Foster and Sons in 1895.[2]

In 1960, two of the founder's grandsons Joe and Jeff Foster renamed the company Reebok in England, having found the name in a dictionary won in a race by Joe Foster as a boy; the dictionary was South African edition hence the spelling.[3] The company lived up to the J.W. Foster legacy, manufacturing first-class footwear for customers throughout the UK. In 1979, Paul Fireman, a US sporting goods distributor, saw a pair of Reeboks at an international trade show and negotiated to sell them in North America.[2]



[edit] Freestyle and Ex-O-Fit success

Reebok surged in popularity in 1982 after the introduction of the Freestyle athletic shoe, which was designed for women and came out when the aerobics craze started. Not only was the Reebok Freestyle popular as athletic wear, but also as casual wear. As a result the Freestyle became an icon of the 1980s fashion scene with hi-top versions (including two velcro straps at the top) and colors, including white, black, red, yellow, and blue. Reebok continues to produce the Freestyle as it is popular with cheerleading, aerobic dancing, the gym and consumers.

Following the Freestyle success, Reebok also introduced an athletic shoe for men, called the Ex-O-Fit. Similar to the Freestyle, it came in low-top and hi-top versions; however, unlike the Freestyle hi-top with two velcro closure straps, the Ex-O-Fit only had one strap. One of the designers of this early footwear was the founder's son, David Foster.[3]

[edit] Human rights and production details

Welcome sign at Reebok headquarters

In the past, Reebok had an association with outsourcing through sweatshops, but today it claims it is committed to human rights. In April 2004, Reebok's footwear division became the first company to be accredited by the Fair Labor Association. In 2004, Reebok also became a founding member of the Fair Factories Clearinghouse, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving worker conditions across the apparel industry.

Supplier information, according to the Reebok website as of May 2007:

"Footwear Reebok uses footwear factories in 14 countries. Most factories making Reebok footwear are based in Asia — primarily China (accounting for 51% of total footwear production), Indonesia (21%), Vietnam (17%) and Thailand (7%). Production is consolidated, with 88% of Reebok footwear manufactured in 11 factories, employing over 75,000 workers.

"Apparel Reebok has factories in 45 countries. The process of purchasing products from suppliers is organized by region. Most (52%) of Reebok's apparel sold in the United States is produced in Asia, with the rest coming from countries in the Caribbean, North America, Africa and the Middle East. Apparel sold in Europe is typically sourced from Asia and Europe. Apparel sold in the Asia Pacific region is typically produced by Asian-based manufacturers.

[edit] List of Reebok advertising campaigns

  • "Planet Reebok"
  • "I Am, What I Am"
  • "Run Easy"
  • "Because Life Is Not Just A Spectator Sport"

[edit] Endorsements

Logo of Sidney Crosby Rbk SC87 line by Reebok

Reebok is the official sponsor of the International Cricket Council. It manufactures uniform for ICC International Panel of umpires and referees. Also, all the playing kits used in ICC Events, such as wickets, are sponsored by Reebok. It became official sponsor of ICC in 2007.

The company holds exclusive rights to manufacture and market both authentic and replica uniform jerseys and sideline apparel of the teams of the National Football League (NFL) since 2002 (marketed as NFL Equipment), the Canadian Football League (CFL) since 2004, and is the official shoe supplier to the NFL and Major League Baseball (MLB). In addition, Reebok acquired official National Hockey League (NHL) sponsor CCM in 2004, and is now manufacturing ice hockey equipment under the CCM and Reebok brands, and has signed popular young stars Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin to endorsement deals (Crosby for Reebok, Ovechkin for CCM). Reebok has phased out the CCM name on NHL authentic and replica jerseys in recent years, using the Reebok logo since 2005. Reebok is also endorsed by Lewis Hamilton, Allen Iverson, Yao Ming, Carolina Klüft, Amélie Mauresmo, Nicole Vaidišová, Shahar Pe'er, Ivy, Thierry Henry, Vince Young, Iker Casillas, Ryan Giggs, Andriy Shevchenko, and Amir Khan.

The company maintains its relationship with its origins in England through a long-term sponsorship deal with Bolton Wanderers, a Premiership football (soccer) club. When the team moved to a brand new ground in the late-1990s, their new home was named the Reebok Stadium. Several other English clubs had Reebok sponsorship deals up until the purchase by Adidas, but most have since switched to either the parent brand (which has a long history in football) or another company altogether.

In 2005, Reebok also signed an exclusive agreement to design and supply all eight team home and away strips for the new Australian A-League competition. Although not an expensive deal, this partnership is paying dividends for Reebok, due to the growing popularity of football and the league in the area. An estimated 125,000 jerseys have been sold in Australia, a record for a single league's sales in a year for a sports manufacturer.[4]

Reebok sponsors four teams in the Australian Football League, those being the Fremantle Football Club, the Melbourne Football Club, the Port Adelaide Football Club and the Richmond Football Club, the latter two beginning their association from the 2007 season. They also sponsor the Gold Coast Football Club, who currently play in the TAC Cup and are due to enter the AFL in 2011. Reebok has supplied rugby league teams the Melbourne Storm, Manly Sea Eagles and the Gold Coast Titans with club's kits and other merchandise.

In rugby union, Reebok sponsored the Wales national team until late 2008, who won the Grand Slam in the Six Nations Championship in that year, and the Tasman Makos in New Zealand's domestic competition, the Air New Zealand Cup.

In 2006, FC Barcelona and France striker Thierry Henry (then playing for Arsenal) signed a deal to join the "I Am What I Am" campaign on 1 August 2006. Ryan Giggs has also done "I Am What I Am" commercials. Also, on 1 August, Andriy Shevchenko started his endorsement deal with the company.[5]

The company also holds sponsorships with Mexican club Chivas Guadalajara; Brazilian clubs Cruzeiro, Internacional, and São Paulo FC; and German club FC Köln for the 2008–09 season.

Reebok advertisement in Basel

International cricketers such as Sri Lankan captain Mahela Jayawardene , Srialnkan Cricketers Sanath Jayasuriya , Ajantha Mendis, Indian captains Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Rahul Dravid, Bangladeshi captain Mohammad Ashraful , Bangladeshi cricketers Mohammad Rafique and Habibul Bashar, endorse Reebok. They are supplied with Reebok cricket shoes, as well as with cricket bats marked with the Reebok brand in the case of Dhoni.The recent cricketers include Yuvraj Singh and Yusuf Pathan.

In August 2006, Reebok re-signed a track and field athlete to a two-year deal. The contract supposedly insisted that Curtis James test upcoming shoes, and other designs. He also endorses Reebok running apparel, where he is supplied with clothing, shoes, hats, and other Reebok running equipment. Curtis re-signed once again in 2008. Reebok sponsored sports kits for the great rich Indian Premier League teams, such as the Royal Challengers Bangalore,Kolkata Knight Riders,Rajasthan Royals,Chennai Super Kings and Deccan Chargers in the first edition of the league held in 2008, however for the second edition held in 2009 the sponsorship was reduced to 4 teams (Royal Challengers Bangalore,Kolkata Knight Riders,Chennai Super Kings,Kings XI Punjab) kits.

Rapper Jay-Z became the first non-athlete to get a signature shoe from Reebok. The "S. Carter Collection by Rbk" was launched on 21 November 2003 and the S. Carter sneaker became the fastest-selling shoe in the company's history.[6] Later, Reebok made a deal with rapper 50 Cent to release a line of G-Unit sneakers and artists like Nelly and Miri Ben-Ari have become spokespersons for the company. Reebok also signed Scarlett Johansson and introduced her own line of apparel and footwear called Scarlett Hearts, an Rbk Lifestyle Collection.

[edit] Former Sponsored Athletes

[edit] Current Sponsored Athletes

[edit] Australian Football

[edit] Cricket teams/clubs with kits manufactured by Reebok

[edit] 2008 Indian Premier League

[edit] Indian Premier League 2009

[edit] Association Football clubs/leagues with kits manufactured by Reebok

[edit] Europe
[edit] Africa
[edit] Asia/Oceania
[edit] North America
[edit] Central America
[edit] South America

[edit] National Association Football teams

[edit] Rugby League

[edit] Rugby Union

[edit] Colleges

  • United States Boston College - On December 1, 2009, Boston College announced it will be switching to Under Armour for the 2010-2011 athletic seasons.

[edit] Former Sponsored U.S. Colleges

[edit] Former Sponsored Major League Soccer Clubs

[edit] Former Sponsored English Premiere League Clubs

[edit] Former Sponsorships of Professional Sporting Leagues

[edit] Former National Teams Sponsored By Reebok

[edit] Recent news

  • In 2009, Reebok launched JUKARI Fit to Fly, an innovative gym workout designed for all women with one single objective – to make fitness for women fun again. JUKARI, the result of a long-term relationship between Reebok and the globally renowned entertainment company, Cirque du Soleil, is an hour-long workout that was created on a specially-designed piece of equipment called the FlySet, which gives the sensation of flying while strengthening and lengthening the body through cardio, strength, balance and core training. JUKARI launched in top gyms in fourteen cities around the world including Hong Kong, Mexico City, Madrid, London, Krakow, Munich, Seoul, Kuala Lumpur, Buenos Aires, Santiago, Montreal, Los Angeles, Boston, and New York. To complement JUKARI Fit to Fly, Reebok also created two collections of women’s fitness apparel and footwear called On the Move and the Reebok-Cirque du Soleil collection. Both lines consist of products that can be worn for a range of fitness disciplines, from running to yoga, JUKARI Fit to Fly, to tennis. All were developed and designed with a deep understanding and knowledge of the unique way a woman’s body moves.
  • In 2009, Reebok launched the EasyTone footwear collection that allows consumers to “take the gym with them.” The EasyTone technology involves two balance pods under the heel and forefoot of the shoe that create a natural instability with every step, which Reebok claims forces the muscles to adapt and develop tone.
  • In April 2008 Reebok launched it's online store in UK and France [1]. In January 2009 Reebok had extended the store to Germany, Austria, Netherlands, Belgium and Ireland and had also introduced YourReebok - an application to design your own Reeboks [2].
  • For the 2008-09 season, Reebok created the Reebok Edge 2 uniform system, for National Hockey League's players. The league adopted the jersey and now all teams sport the new style for both their home and away jerseys.
  • In July 2007, Reebok launched its Lifestyle Footwear Collection in association with Daddy Yankee's new album. In December 2007, Reebok launched the GOAL Collection of football gear on the release of the Indian football movie Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal.
  • In June 2007, Reebok announced Scarlett Johansson on its array of brand ambassadors. Johansson promotes the Scarlett 'Hearts' Rbk" collection, a 'fashion-forward, athletic-inspired' footwear targeted at the Indian market.
  • For the 2007/08 season, the National Hockey League introduced a new uniform system league-wide, designed and manufactured by Reebok and called Reebok Edge. The new uniforms include new fabrics which are said to repel water and sweat more effectively. Most players have avoided comment, but some have commented that the Edge system's improved water repelling abilities leads to gloves and skates becoming saturated and uncomfortable during play.
  • In late 2006, a court case began between Liverpool FC, the winners of the 2005 UEFA Champions League while wearing Reebok's kit, and Reebok. Reebok claimed that Liverpool cost them £7m because of a delay in confirming the renewal of the Carlsberg sponsorship deal, which meant a delay in releasing the away shirt for 2005/06 (the last that Reebok would make for them)The kit that was eventually released was very similar to the away kit for 2003/04. Liverpool subsequently switched to Adidas for their official kit following Adidas' acquisition of Reebok.
  • In October 2006 Reebok launches its first blog, I am what I am in Spanish.
  • On March 23, 2006, Reebok recalled 300,000 charm bracelets that contained extremely high levels of lead. The bracelet has a heart pendant at the end that is printed with the name "Reebok." It allegedly caused the lead poisoning death of a 4-year-old child who swallowed it.
  • In August 2005, one of the company's largest rivals, Adidas, announced that it would acquire Reebok for $3.8 billion. The deal was completed in January 2006.[7]

[edit] Reebok technologies

[edit] DMX

[edit] Performance Fabrics

[edit] Other technologies

[edit] Some athletic shoe models

[edit] Some designer shoe models

[edit] Some sports equipment models