Remember Li Ning?
The once gold medal winning gymnast from China is the namesake of his own brand which is making some inroads in it’s efforts to be a global sportswear brand. Heard of them? Perhaps not. This brand is a household name in China, yet in it’s efforts to grow into the US market, they’re having difficulties. Figure out why? Is the name Li Ning something that you’d rock on a daily basis? Can a design transcend a name that’s… well, a name? Imagine if a shoe was called Shaquille O’Neal, who ironically is sponsored by Li Ning 5 years too late? Would you wear that? No. That said, the company has had massive drops in sales. The stocks have dropped massive and the gross sales aren’t looking good. The offices of designers in Portland has had an exodus.
So what does a brand do when it’s called Li Ning? The name has to remain. Maybe a sub brand for the US Market so the brand goes through the backdoor. Maybe they take ideas laid down by the kids and go that route. But badminton sponsorships? Wrong move dudes.