Simone Biles has signed a long-term agreement to represent Athleta, a division of the clothing retailer Gap. This announcement also means she will be leaving Nike, her longtime sponsor.
With a shared vision of empowering women and girls, Simone Biles joins Athleta in an extensive partnership that will bring to life the brand‘s mission of fostering community, igniting participation, and inspiring the next generation to be the best version of themselves.
This Simone Biles-Athleta partnership announcement coming just three months ahead of the Summer Olympics also means Biles will be leaving Nike, her longtime sponsor. The deal includes arrangements for Athleta to fund Biles’ already scheduled post-Olympic gymnastics exhibition tour.
In recent interviews Biles suggested she felt more aligned with the values of Athleta than with those of Nike.
“I think they stand for everything that I stand for,” Biles said of Athleta to The Wall Street Journal, which first reported the agreement.
Simone Biles and Athleta will work together on initiatives with a particular focus toward Athleta Girl – encouraging millions of girls to rise and own their limitless potential. Biles will collaborate with Athleta’s design team in development of signature products for aspiring athletes, including plans for multiple capsule collaborations for Athleta Girl.
“Using my voice has been very empowering for me and I am grateful to embark on this new journey with Athleta to inspire young girls and women to do the same,” said Simone Biles. “The opportunity to encourage young girls to reach their full potential and be a force for change is incredibly powerful. I admire Athleta for their commitment to recognize and support women’s individual and collective strength and, together, I believe we can help girls to confidently and passionately take on the world in their athletic endeavors and beyond.”
Biles, widely regarded as one of the greatest female athletes of all time, will connect directly with girls through Athleta’s active and engaged community to inspire honest conversations and help develop programming focused on supporting and lifting up young women and girls.
“We are excited to welcome Simone to the Athleta family and work together to further our mission of empowering women and girls,” said Mary Beth Laughton, president and chief executive officer of Athleta. “Simone believes in championing the next generation of female athletes as much as we do, and we are confident this partnership will continue to build community with our customers and enrich our brand.”
As the exclusive active and athleisure apparel partner of Simone Biles, Athleta plans to co-create Biles’ own signature activewear line that will bring a piece of her to girls everywhere.
“Simone embodies our brand through her advocacy, mentorship and work in the community,” said Jana Henning, chief product officer of Athleta. “Our team is looking forward to working collaboratively with her to bring the same elements of confidence, strength, and grace she demonstrates on and off the mat into future collections for girls.”
A brand for women by women, Athleta is committed to diversity, inclusion and representation for all. Biles joining Athleta further reimagines the traditional athletic sponsorship – Athleta’s holistic approach to partnerships prioritizes authenticity and shared values while uplifting all aspects of their life. Athleta has successfully supported Allyson Felix, the most decorated woman in U.S. track and field history, in her advocacy efforts and is uniquely positioned to celebrate Biles and Felix as voices for change and empowering the next generation.