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Foot Locker, NBA sign multiyear marketing deal


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Dive Brief:

  • As part of the retailer’s turnaround plans, Foot Locker entered a multiyear partnership with the NBA to make the shoe retailer an official league marketing partner in the U.S., according to a Thursday press release.
  • As part of the deal, Foot Locker will be promoted across the league’s platforms, including social media channels and on-court virtual signage, and the collaboration will engage with fans during events such as NBA All-Star. Foot Locker’s loyalty program is involved in the effort and will provide “additional connection points” during the basketball season.
  • Foot Locker celebrated the collaboration during an event at its Times Square store in New York City with more than 50 members of the retailer’s “hype crew” in attendance, according to the announcement.

Dive Insight:

The partnership with the NBA comes as Foot Locker tries to turn its business around through its “Lace Up” plan. Earlier this year, the company introduced the initiative, which includes closing underperforming stores and banners to streamline its operations. 

According to the NBA partnership announcement, the deal with the sports league is another piece of the plan aimed at driving growth and creating value for the retailer’s stakeholders. The parntership comes on the back of Foot Locker’s launch of a new global brand platform, “The Heart of Sneakers,” and a corresponding holiday campaign that drew inspiration from the company’s place in sneaker culture.

“This exciting partnership cements Foot Locker’s position at the center of basketball and sneaker culture and expands our collaborative journey with the NBA,” Frank Bracken, chief commercial officer of Foot Locker, said in a statement. “We look forward to working together to create unforgettable events and experiences that further engage NBA fans and our customers in support of our Lace Up plan.”

Foot Locker is executing a turnaround amid three consecutive quarters of declines. In Q4, the retailer reported a 0.3% dip in sales and detailed its plans to shutter hundreds of stores by 2026. Continuing into Q1, sales fell 11.4%, and during its most recent quarter, the retailer reported a 9.9% drop in sales.



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