International swimwear brand Speedo is the new exclusive partner of the Chinese National Swimming Team, an extension of the brand’s official partnership with the Chinese Swimming Association. The brand did not disclose the exact length of the deal, but said it is for multiple years and effective immediately.
The team will wear the newest products in Speedo‘s Fastkin series: the LZR Pure Intent and LZR Pure Valor swimsuits, as well as the Pure Focus goggle. Since the launch of the new Fastskin suit in 2019, 73 percent of new world records have been set by swimmers wearing Speedo, according to the company.
“Chinese swimmers played a key part in the testing phase during the development of the latest Fastskin suits and we are excited that they will now be able to wear the suits on the biggest stage of them all,” Rob Hicking, brand director at Speedo, said. “Speedo continues to support a global network of athletes through our world-leading innovation and we are thrilled to work with the CSA and the national team in Tokyo and beyond.”
The company currently also has deals with athletes and teams in a number of top swimming nations worldwide, including Australia, USA, Canada, Spain and South Korea.
In January, Speedo International Parent company Pentland Group purchased Speedo North America, uniting the national brands under one umbrella. Speedo International has operations in Australia, China, Japan, Korea, France, Italy, Israel, Poland and the U.S, according to Bloomberg.
“We have a great working relationship with Speedo and we are delighted to extend this partnership to include the China national swimming team,” Chinese National Team manager Ching Hao said. “For years, Speedo has produced the highest quality products in competitive swimwear and we look forward to seeing our athletes performing in the suits.”
Speedo previously had a well-known deal with six-time Chinese Olympic medalist Sun Yang – who was handed an eight-year ban in February – but said in July 2019 that it hadn’t sponsored him individually for years. In November of last year, Sun quietly announced a new deal with Arena, which he had worn at the 2019 FINA World Championships.
Once dominant in the competitive swimwear space with its innovative Fastskin and LZR Racer suits, Speedo has recently faced competition from TYR and Arena (the latter especially internationally), as well as up-and-coming brands. Speedo has also pushed into the leisurewear space, launching fashion swimwear and activewear lines.
Editorial note: Speedo is a SwimSwam partner.