In what may seem like an odd combination of brands more thoughtful analysis reveals a very synergistic partnership marketing strategy.
Puma sponsor F1 and have a deep history with motor racing. They currently sponsor Ferrari, Mercedes, Sauber and Williams F1teams plus four GP2 brands and a Nascar brand along with two Motor GP and a Superbike team. They clearly believe that linking with fast brands on a racing track will associate them with speed on the track.
Puma have always been more social in their marketing and brand values that rivals adidas (up until 1948 Puma and adidas were the same company and even now have head offices in the same German city) and Nike who have always been more serious about the winning and the fitness elements.
It’s this fun social context that the Mini partnership should be seen through. The multi-year license partnership is geared around a British-themed collection of apparel, footwear and accessories for men and women.
Bags feature seatbelt-inspired straps and extendable pockets, based on the concept of, like the Mini, being compact on the outside but roomy and functional on the inside. Very cool and creative product alignments and designs.
Puma has a history of fun and quirky partnerships and has lines of shoes and sports clothing designed by designers Lamine Kouyate, Amy Garbers, and others.
The Mini tie-up makes even more sense when you realise that 25% of Puma is owned by French luxury retail group PPR who own brands such as Gucci, YSL, Sergio Rossi, Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen to name but a few as well as leading sports and tech retailer FNAC.
The line is to be distributed globally at selected Mini dealerships and Puma retail and wholesale stores from September and with both brands being seen as aspirational and fun they should have no problem attracting those crucial early adopters and opinion formers to drive the partnership to success.