Adidas All Black Jerseys
Adidas sponsorship of the All Blacks in the Rugby World Cup being held in New Zealand is under pressure since the introduction of a new All Black jersey to the public this year. Launched in late July, the new All Black uniform was heralded as so advanced that there was only one machine in the world capable of making it. The torso of the jersey is created as an anatomically shaped tube, ensuring a perfect seamless fit. adidas’ patented ClimaCool technology is built into the main body of the fabric to keep players cool and dry. The jersey campaign came unstuck, however, when it was revealed that New Zealanders would be required to pay $NZ 220 for the jersey, while sites such as worldrugbyshop.com in the US were selling it for $US79.99 ($NZ92.68). Adidas at first blocked New Zealanders from buying the jersey from overseas sites, before backtracking with an apology. The wholesale price remained unchanged.
YouTube videos (now removed by adidas) tell the story of the launch of the new jersey. All Black captain Richie McCaw appears with team players Kieran Read and Conrad Smith as they reveal their childhood All Black photographs. Adidas engagement with the All Black fan base has been supported through the development of the All Blacks Facebook page. Creative activity focused on celebrating the contribution of fans, with members of the All Blacks turning up unannounced in situations where the fans were least expecting it. The All Blacks provided real surprise and delight impromptu visits by visiting houses in Taranaki. A knitting club in Dunedin knitted a set of All Black jerseys for charity and then got treated to a visit by the boy. Raurimu Primary School made a life-size papier mache sculpture of Richie McCaw only to have it swapped for Richie himself in a surprise unveiling.
The Adidas All Blacks Rugby campaign was developed at TBWA\Whybin Tequila, New Zealand.