Under Armour (UA) is a Baltimore-based sports enhancement company that focuses on making all athletes better through relentless innovation of their product and key partnerships to support the betterment of society.
Their latest partnership with NBA’s top shooter, Steph Curry, looks to bring opportunities to kids in low-income communities. “Curry” by Under Armour focuses on the significance of sports as a tool for youth development.
According to the UA website, the “Curry Brand is committed to bringing the joy of sports to every kid, no matter what their circumstances.” Additionally, Under Armour is searching for ways to reach their youthful audience; UA seems to believe that Curry is the right MVP-caliber athlete and personality to attract targeted attention.
The collection was announced on Monday, but rumors begin to surface as early as August about the design collaboration. The full collection will be available by December 11. Under Armour’s Chief Executive Patrik Frisk mentioned to CNBC in an interview, “We wanted to make sure we did this as close as possible to the NBA season finally launching … and the fact that we’re launching in between Black Friday and the holidays, we think is very opportune.”
The Golden State Warriors point-guard will also have the collection available on Currybrand.com. The first release included shoes and clothes targeting various kinds of sports; the collection is looking to have more depth and range in what is offered in near future.
The Curry Brand focuses on the impact it has on society; Under Armour found themselves being aligned with that social responsibility. Solidifying that winning mentality, the logo for “Curry” was created to embody Steph Curry’s “three-count” hand gesture.
Acknowledged as the best shooter in the history of the NBA, Curry has pride attached to all his ventures. On the Under Armour website, he stated, “Everything I put my name on has to be good—it has to help you play and it has to support our mission to change the game for good.”
The price range of the products ranges from $25-$200, leaving room for customers to affordably invest in gear from this compelling design of athletic wear. The Men’s UA SC 3zero III is the current highlighted shoe; it comes in multiple colors: red, blue, white, and black.
Price points start at $90 for their training shoes; Under Armour made sure the style matched the quality of the champion it represents. Quoting the website’s description, the shoe has enhanced cushioning around the ankle collar for superior comfort and heel stability. Although the product has reached an optimal level of comfort, Under Armour is facing a challenging time reaching younger consumers.
Teenagers from 41 states were surveyed about current brands; according to Piper Sandler’s biannual survey, Under Armour is listed at number one as the top brand they would not wear. UA is competing with some of the biggest sports apparel brands that have been in the game long before Curry started his shooting streak. Sports brands such as Nike and Adidas apparel, continue to grow in popularity among the youth. On the same survey, Nike sits as the number one brand teenagers want to wear.
Rendering the past, ESPN.com stated the analytics behind Curry’s potential worth to the UA Brand was estimated at 14 billion dollars in March, 2016. At the time, Curry’s shoe business surpassed Lebron James and whispers began to grow around the Curry label being as big as Nike’s Holy Grail, Jordan’s brand, with the slight possibility of growing past that too.
Curry has partnered with Nike for years, but when it came down to the main pitch, Nike lagged on showing Curry’s value. ESPN.com reported during the pitch meeting, Curry’s full name was pronounced incorrectly. Those pitching to Stephen Curry referred to him as “Steph-on” and when the PowerPoint began, Kevin Durant’s name was left on the deck package. That was enough fuel for Curry to make a B-line to UA; his contract with Under Armour is active until 2024.
The pieces are a part of the “Curry” capsule, intending to “Change the game for good.” The official mission found on the UA website states, “We are committed to changing the game for communities who need it most by bringing the joy of sports to every kid. That means breaking down the barriers to performance by committing our resources to provide access to programs, coaching development, safe places to play, and great gear.”
The first to experience the game-changer spirit are the middle schools in Oakland. Curry and Under Armour partnered with Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA), “to provide professional development for every youth sports coach in the Oakland Unified School District, as well as Oakland Parks, Recreation & Youth Development.”
This trilogy union developed three pillars that are found on the PCA website, “Safe Places to Play, Programming and Product, and Coaching and Leadership Development.” The projected goal for this union is to help more than 100,000 future athletes by 2025.
UA, Curry, and PCA, will construct areas to learn and grow “on and off the court.” Quoting the PCA website, the brand looks to invest in court refurbishment and viable programming. There will be resources and products to encourage local team sports through the school systems and local organizations.
Noting Curry’s highlighted words on the PCA landing page about the joint venture, “Play is a fundamental part of childhood and is critical to development. So much of who I am as a person and a leader today is because of playing sports as a kid …”