Football star and fashion leader David Beckham has signed a global licensing agreement with Hong Kong based Li & Fung spinoff Global Brands Group.
The deal will see the Beckham name on a range of consumer products, with a special focus on China. Global Brands distributes apparel, footwear, fashion accessories and lifestyle products and the deal will extend as far as kidswear, electronics and FMCG products.
This week’s deal was struck with the direction of Beckham’s long time business partner Simon Fuller. In a statement, short on specifics and long on platitudes, Global Brands said the new deal would “expand their interests by creating large scale global brands in partnership with a select number of high profile iconic sports and entertainment stars and rights holders”.
“For more than two decades, David Beckham has been a symbol of the powerful connection between iconic global stars and their loyal fans around the world. This joint venture will take this concept to the next level by capitalising on Beckham’s star power and status as one of the world’s most famous sports and style icons.
“It will also leverage Global Brands’ strong brand management skills, relationships with international distributors and retailers, design and operating capabilities, and local market expertise as well as Simon Fuller’s deep understanding of consumers, talent, and sports and entertainment rights.”
Beckham described the deal as a “first-of-its-kind joint venture” which allows us to do something that no one has ever done before. He added, “Simon and I have worked together for many years, and nobody understands artists and rights owners better than he does. Together with Global Brands’ worldwide platform and Bruce’s passion for building successful brands, I am very much looking forward to the many exciting opportunities ahead.”
In an interview, Beckham later added: “Throughout my career I’ve had quite a few sponsorship deals,” Beckham said. “This takes it to a different level for me. I’ve gone from being in a sponsorship deal to being an owner.”
Global Brands CEO and vice chairman Bruce Rockowitz said David Beckham is probably “the most fascinating personality in the world today, and I have long admired his ability to push boundaries and drive trends in both sports and fashion”.
“With the glamour and celebrity that David brings to this joint venture, together with Simon’s remarkable business acumen and his many years as a successful entrepreneur in the world of sports and entertainment, I see an exciting future for our partnership in creating incredible brands.”