FLORENCE — The Woolmark Company has tapped Italian soccer player Alessandro Del Piero as its new ambassador.
Del Piero is to front the “Merino Wool. No Finer Feeling” campaign to be shot by Oliviero Toscani in July and slated for global release in fall.
“Wool is a natural talent, just like Alessandro,” asserted Fabrizio Servente, Woolmark global advisor speaking at a press conference during Pitti Uomo here on Wednesday. Servente noted that wool is “an all-round product, fit to compete with synthetic materials currently used in sports.”
“There is no technical reason why wool couldn’t be part of the next World Cup,” added Rob Langtry, global chief strategy and marketing officer of Woolmark Co. “It is as much a technical fiber as any other. In fact, some of the fibers used in sportswear mirror the cell structure of wool. It’s an animal fiber so it’s naturally hydrophobic; it’s a natural anti-bacterial, so it doesn’t smell; it’s light and it’s flexible,” he said in an interview.
The Woolmark Company, representing Australia’s 28,000 wool producers, has been working on a number of innovations, including “TEC (total easy care) Merino,” currently used by brands such as Z Zegna and Paul Smith.
Del Piero, who just finished a two-year stint with Sydney FC, said while there, he was able to get to know the wool industry a little better.
“I have shot other fashion campaign before,” enthused the star striker, “but nothing like this. I’m prepared to do what Oliviero tells me,” he smiled, adding he would travel to Brazil in the upcoming days to cover the cup for Sky Italy.
Comparing Del Piero to John Lennon of The Beatles, Toscani would not reveal any visual details of the new campaign other than this: “It’s Del Piero, he will play football – but in a different way,” he said.
The collaboration marks Woolmark Co.’s first celebrity endorsement.