Puma inks kit sponsorship deal with Athletics Federation of India

Over 400 athletes will be outfitted with cutting-edge Puma products designed to enhance movement, aerodynamics, and ultimately, speed.

The global sports brand, Puma has signed a multi-year deal with the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) to become the national governing body’s official kit sponsor.

This exciting partnership, brokered by IOS Sports and Entertainment, equips Indian athletes competing under the AFI banner with high-performance apparel, footwear, and travel gear.

The collaboration focuses on maximising athlete performance across various track and field disciplines, including jumps, throws, cross-country running, and marathons. Over 400 athletes will be outfitted with cutting-edge Puma products designed to enhance movement, aerodynamics, and ultimately, speed. Notably, Indian athletes will gain access to Puma’s world-class speed suits, previously unavailable in India.

This marks a historic moment for AFI, signifying its first partnership with a global sportswear giant. The collaboration is expected to be a catalyst for the growth and success of both established and upcoming Indian athletes on the international stage. Renowned competitors like Neeraj Chopra (javelin throw), Kishore Kumar Jena (javelin throw), Parul Chaudhary (steeplechase), Subha Venkatesan (4x 400 m relay), Murali Sreeshankar (long jump), Jyothi Yarraji (hurdle), Priyanka Goswami (race walk) and Jeswin Aldrin (long jump) will be seen sporting Puma gear at upcoming events, excluding Paris Olympics 2024, Asian Games, and Commonwealth Games due to separate sponsorship agreements.

Commenting on this landmark deal, Arne Freundt, CEO, PUMA SE, said, “More than 75 years ago, PUMA’s founder Rudolf Dassler had the vision to develop products for athletes that would give them the speed, the agility and the nimbleness of a puma. We are excited that we can now bring this spirit to the Athletics Federation of India. India is one of the most dynamic markets and we hope that by achieving success with the Athletics Federation of India, we can together inspire the next generation of athletes.”

Karthik Balagopalan, Managing Director, PUMA India, said, “At PUMA, we strongly believe in serving the athletes and helping them realise their full potential with our world class performance products. We are thrilled to partner with the Athletics Federation of India and help our athletes perform at the highest levels in various sporting disciplines across the globe. Together with Athletics Federation of India, we will accelerate this transformative journey in Indian athletics.” 

Adille Sumariwalla, President, Athletics Federation of India, said, “Our association with PUMA represents a significant milestone for India’s athletes. With their high-quality gear, we are not only enhancing the performance of athletes but also creating a culture of excellence within the country’s sporting community. We are confident that this partnership will propel Indian athletics to new heights on the global stage.” 

Commenting on the partnership, Javelin throw champion Neeraj Chopra said, “As an athlete training for 12 years, I know the importance of high-quality gear for high-level practice. With Athletics Federation of India teaming up with global sports brand PUMA, Indian athletes across all levels will now have access to training gear of international excellence, assisting us to express our best in our game now. This partnership signals the bright future of Indian sport.”

Kishore Kumar Jena, Asian Games silver medalist, added, “PUMA and Athletics Federation of India teaming up to invest in athletes is a big milestone for the Indian sporting scene. I am extremely excited to see how this partnership will transform our game at tournaments worldwide and help us turn our dreams into reality.”

Subha Venkatesan, 4×400 m relay runner and Paris 2024 qualified, commented, “I am extremely happy to see the collective commitment of Athletics Federation of India and PUMA towards nurturing the next generation of sporting talent and fostering a culture of success in the country. I am confident that this partnership will bring out the best in me and help me achieve my goals this year.” 

Founded in 1948, Puma is a renowned German brand known for its innovative athletic footwear, apparel, and accessories. The company is dedicated to helping athletes reach their full potential through cutting-edge performance technology. Puma’s commitment to the Indian sports ecosystem is evident through its existing partnerships with Virat Kohli, Mohammed Shami, Delhi Capitals‘ (DC) (Indian Premier League (IPL) and Women’s Premier League (WPL) teams), and Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB). The brand also unveiled a new ad campaign featuring star DC players – Rishabh PantIshant Sharma and Yash Dhull.

This partnership comes on the heels of the successful 27th National Federation Senior Athletics Competition held in Bhubaneshwar, Odisha (May 12th-15th). Puma joins an esteemed roster of AFI sponsors, including Reliance Foundation, HSBC India, and Rural Electrification Corporation Limited (REC). 

Established in 1946, the AFI is the governing body for athletics in India, playing a vital role in nurturing and promoting Indian athletes.

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