Beyoncé and Adidas Team Up to Relaunch Ivy Park Athleisure Brand

Amidst a competitive space for collaboration, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter ultimately announced her choice to partner with Adidas this past Thursday. The singer was named creative partner at the company in addition to working to relaunch her athleisure brand, Ivy Park. This closely follows Beyoncé’s purchase for total ownership of Ivy Park after cutting ties with its original co-founder, Top Shop, in Nov. 2018.

"This is the partnership of a lifetime for me," said Beyoncé. "Adidas has had tremendous success in pushing creative boundaries. We share a philosophy that puts creativity, growth and social responsibility at the forefront of business. I look forward to re-launching and expanding Ivy Park on a truly global scale with a proven, dynamic leader."

In a joint statement, it was explained that Beyonce will act to “develop new signature footwear and apparel” as well as relaunch Ivy Park. The collaboration between celebrities and athletics companies is not a new phenomenon, with a handful of predecessors including Kanye West with Adidas, Rihanna with Puma and Kendrick Lamar with Reebok. It was only a matter of time before Beyoncé entered that sphere, bringing along her precise artistic eye and devoted fanbase along for the ride.

"As the creator sport brand, Adidas challenges the status quo and pushes the limits of creativity through its open source approach. Beyoncé is an iconic creator but also a proven business leader, and together, we have the ability to inspire change and empower the next generation of creators," said Adidas executive, Eric Liedtke.

Courtesy: WWD 

 

This announcement comes at a perfect time, fresh off the heels of the Adidas “She Breaks Barriers” campaign for International Women’s Day; the goal of the campaign was to break down barriers for women in athletics. The statement emphasized the impact of Beyoncé’s involvement with the brand as an influential figure for equality, saying “This unique relationship aligns both parties around a set of core principles including the importance of women in leadership, shared ownership, empowerment and collaboration.”

It was reported that Beyoncé had initially met with Reebok only to walk out of the meeting due to a lack of diversity and representation to tell her story in a collaboration. According to ESPN writer Nick DePaula, several brands approached her about working together, but the Reebok meeting went noticeably poorly.

“She had a meeting at Reebok and they had a whole presentation of everything, potential products, how this could all look, and she kind of took a step back and said, ‘Is this the team that will be working on my product?'” said DePaula.  “Somebody said, ‘Yes,’ and she said, ‘Nobody in this room reflects my background, my skin color and where I’m from and what I want to do.’ So she took a step back and left and then it did not come to terms.”

In the Adidas collaboration, however, there seems to be a much stronger partnership in the making. The statement explicitly acknowledged a desire and admiration for the two parties’ shared interests, saying “Beyoncé and Adidas are natural partners, both with a deep respect for and commitment to creativity, equity and creators. Neither ascribes to the typical stereotypes of athletes and what athleisure clothing and footwear should be and instead, will bring to life a shared vision of inclusion that will forever alter the opportunities and landscape for all… This partnership respects Beyoncé's ownership of her company which continues her journey as one of the first black women to be the sole owner of an athleisure brand.”

There aren’t many details about dates or plans available as of now, but with the fervor of Beyoncé’s team and her adoring followers, the collaboration is sure to be a success—iconic, even. Until then, I’ll be checking and re-checking Adidas' social media in anticipation.