ABFRL and Authentic Brands Group have formed a strategic collaboration for Reebok in India

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ABFRL ( Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Limited) will take over Reebok’s operations in India, with the goal of becoming the country’s premier sports and athletic lifestyle brand.

Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Limited and Authentic Brands Group (ABG), a global brand creation, marketing, and entertainment organisation (ABFRL), India’s top fashion company, announced on Tuesday about the signing of a long-term licencing agreement that gives ABFRL exclusive rights to distribute and sell Reebok products in India and other ASEAN countries through wholesale, e-commerce, and Reebok branded retail stores.

This agreement represents ABFRL’s entry into India’s thriving sports and activewear industry. This area has been significantly developing in recent years, owing to rising income levels, increased health awareness, and the adoption of active lifestyles by young Indians. This market is predicted to increase at a 14 percent annual rate to USD 13 billion by FY24. The deal is a big step forward for ABFRL, which has grown its portfolio into a powerhouse of brands across all key fashion and lifestyle categories in recent years. The addition of Reebok, a well-known worldwide sports and sportswear brand, will help ABFRL fill a gap in its portfolio.

“As Indians get more active, athletic and health focussed, their consumption of apparel and accessories is expected to increasingly change in line with these trends, providing an opportunity to build iconic brands of global repute. Reebok is one of the leading brands in the sporting goods industry globally and has built a very strong presence in the Indian market over the last two decades. In partnership with ABG, we plan to accelerate Reebok’s business in India, combining its global appeal and salience amongst Indian youth. This transaction further strengthens the ABFRL portfolio and increases our ability to engage with consumers across various need spaces,”

Commenting on the transaction, Mr. Ashish Dikshit, Managing Director, ABFRL said.

This collaboration complements ABG’s worldwide Reebok strategy of building a global network of core operating partners dedicated to generating innovation and growth while maintaining the brand’s identity and values. To achieve a cohesive brand voice and vision, ABFRL will collaborate with Reebok Design Group (RDG), a newly-established global brand hub based in Boston, on all product design, development, innovation, and creative direction.

“ABFRL is a champion of the fashion industry in India with proven expertise in building and operating large-scale lifestyle brands across the region. We are very pleased to expand our existing partnership with ABFRL, which includes Forever 21 and other ABG brands, and are confident that ABFRL will be successful in solidifying Reebok’s position with a growing audience of fans in India and Southeast Asia,”

Corey Salter, Chief Operating Officer, Authentic Brands Group added.

Thorough research, legislative approvals, and the signing of definitive agreements are all conditions precedent to the proposed deal. The sale of the Reebok brand to ABG is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2022.

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