Castore expands McLaren links in deal with F1 team
Fast-growing sports label Castore has expanded its McLaren deal to the car marque's Forumula One team. The brand is adding the important new element to its link-up following the launch of its first Mclaren collection last November.
Back then it debuted men’s casualwear inspired by the technical materials used in the brand's supercars. Now it’s inked a multimillion-pound agreement with the F1 team under which it will sell clothing and accessories for the racing team and its fans. It will also run Mclaren’s online shop and its back-end ops. Its five-year deal with Rangers Football Club, announced last year, also sees it running the retail operation and such deeper involvement with the brands it partners is clearly a key strategy for the future.
Founder Tom Beahon told The Telegraph this new contract is “the biggest apparel deal in McLaren’s history”, although he didn’t put a value on it. But sources close to the deal told the newspaper it was worth up to £30 million.
It’s a big achievement for the five-year-old company that counts Andy Murray, Arnaud Massenet (ex-Net-a-Porter), and New Look founder Tom Singh among its backers. The premium label was founded in 2016 by brothers Tom and Phil Beahon with the aim of doing something different in the sports market.
Tom Beahon told the newspaper that one original aim was to avoid going head to head with the big global names in the sports sector, something that would clearly be tough for a small newcomer. But he’s also thrown down a gauntlet to those labels that he sees as essentially targeting the mass-market. He said that long term, he wants his label to be “the number one premium sportswear brand in the global market”.
And deals such as the McLaren line will be key to that aim. Beahon said such partnerships, along with other link-ups such as the one with Rangers and the deal with West Indies Cricket, will help “elevate” the brand.
Beahon said he’s targeting £100 million in revenue this year after seeing sales rising in triple-digits every year since the company — which is profitable — started.
The firm recently moved to an upsized store at the Liverpool One shopping centre, the outsized space reflecting the wider range of products it now offers, as well as its overall ambitions.
And that growth is also driving a need for more people to work there. It currently has a staff of 80, but will expanded that radically this year. The company plans to take on around 200 more people in the next few months. And it will reportedly move its HQ from its current Liverpool home to Manchester. That city has become a key hub for the fashion and beauty sector — especially online brands — with a number of big names based there, such as Boohoo Group, Missguided and The Hut Group.
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