Sportswear firm breaks into English Premier League with new kit deal

Wolves player Adama Traore in training kit

Castore sportswear has agreed a multi-year partnership with Premier League football side Wolves to become the club’s new on-field partner, in a landmark deal for both brands.

The fast-growing British brand – which already has partnerships with a number of leading athletes and teams including Sir Andy Murray, Owen Farrell, Masters-winning golfer Patrick Reed and Glasgow Rangers – has agreed the largest technical wear partnership deal in Wolves’ history.

The new partnership will commence in the 2021/2022 season and sees Castore supply Wolves with all technical apparel for the first team and youth team squads with Wolves responsible for replica products.

This innovative structure is understood to be the first of its kind in the UK and will facilitate a far broader product range than has previously been available to Wolves supporters.

As part of the deal Castore will unveil a first of its kind Pro Performance collection which will be worn by the Wolves first team in all competitions and also be available to purchase by fans. This collection is made from a unique technical fabric developed exclusively by Castore which the brand believe to be lighter, more flexible and more durable than anything the first team has worn before.

Tom Beahon, co-founder of Castore, said: “As a brand deeply committed to the ethos of marginal gains and performance excellence, Castore is the perfect match for the ethos of Wolves football club. We are delighted to be partnering with such an ambitious organisation as Wolves and look forward to supporting the team as they continue their journey in the Premier League.

“We were very clear when we made the decision to enter the football market that we would only partner with clubs who had ambitions to compete at European level – it was clear from the very beginning that everyone at Wolves, from the ownership down, are wholly committed to that goal which is perfectly aligned with Castore’s own ambitions of challenging the existing sportswear market incumbents.

“Both Castore and Wolves are extremely innovative and this partnership represents that ethos. We are delighted to be part of the Wolves pack and look forward to developing world class products for the team and fans in the years ahead.”

Vinny Clark, Wolves general manager for commercial operations, said: “This is truly a ground-breaking deal in Premier League football, which challenges the established order of things, and we are delighted to have found a progressive and disruptive partner in Castore to embark on this journey with us.

“From our first meeting with Tom and Phil, co-founders of Castore, it became evident that we shared a passion to shake things up. We wanted to re-set how things worked from a kit partnership viewpoint to find a win-win-win scenario for our fans, the brand and the club, respectively, and we believe this agreement achieves that.

“Our fans will get a great assortment of product that is unique to Wolves and has been carefully put together in response to the feedback we have received in recent years. In addition to that, this partnership gives greater flexibility and agility in getting product to market and making this a commercially attractive venture, significantly ahead of what we have achieved in the past.

“Range and assortment of product is vitally important to us. We know our fans get frustrated when other clubs have the same kit silhouette, goalkeeper kit or training product as us, or if we can’t offer ladies sizing on replica product to our many women fans.

“These are consistent themes we wanted to address moving forward, and this partnership with Castore enables us to make significant improvements in our offering. Like Europe’s top clubs, we also want to give people access to our authentic pro garments, and a range of kit and training products in the same specification that our players wear, manufactured by Castore will be available, which further strengthens our offering.

He added: “We’re absolutely delighted to welcome Castore into the pack and I see an exciting journey ahead for the partnership.”

This is the Liverpool-based company’s first move into the Premier League football and comes hot on the heels of its partnership with Glasgow Rangers who last season were crowned Scottish Premier League Champions wearing Castore kit.

It follows a previous connection between Liverpool and Wolves when Liverpool-born Steve Morgan, founder and former chairman of housebuilder Redrow, owned the club.

Castore has also recently signed a lucrative partnership with McLaren Formula 1 to further diversify its portfolio of partners.

Castore – with its slogan “Better Never Stops” – was founded by sporting brothers Tom and Phil Beahon in 2015. It develops highly innovative sportswear which is made using patented fabrics and advanced technical engineering for gym use, athletics, tennis and golf.

It has set out ambitious plans to take on global sportswear giants such as Adidas and Nike, particularly in top level football in the UK and Europe.

The company operates a digital, direct-to-consumer business model that has allowed it to grow extremely rapidly since launch and avoid the much-publicised challenges of many traditional bricks and mortar brands and now sells into more than 90 countries globally.

Castore is backed by a consortium of high-profile private investors. They include a billionaire family who invested in January to facilitate Castore’s entry into the global football market, where the brand believes there is an opportunity to disrupt the establish players at the highest levels of the sport.

Castore will partner with five leading clubs across Europe for the 2022/2023 season and utilise its digital expertise and capabilities in technical engineering to create products that enhance player performance and increase club revenues from branded merchandise.

In April this year Castore announced that it will create 300 jobs when it relocates its headquarters from Liverpool to One Central Street, part of The Albert Estate in Manchester city centre, over the next two years.

Castore was founded by brothers Tom and Phil Beahon in 2015. Tom, 31, played football for Tranmere Rovers and Jerez in Spain and Phil, 28, played semi-professional cricket.

The brand sells mainly online and through selected retailers, reaching customers in 64 countries. It operates a handful of high street stores, including the Liverpool One retail centre and a London store in Kings Road, Chelsea.

Sir Andy Murray is a stakeholder in the business. Other shareholders include Tom Singh, the founder of New Look, Arnaud Massenet, the co-founder of Net-
a-Porter fashion group and Robert Senior, a former Saatchi & Saatchi chief executive.

Company revenues are expected to hit £100m this year.