David Beckham’s five-year contract with the Los Angeles Galaxy ends this year, but don’t expect the 36-year-old soccer superstar to fade from public view. “I have a few years left playing still,” he insists to Menswear—and he’s also gearing up for an ambitious foray into the creation of his own lifestyle brand.
This story first appeared in the June 20, 2011 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
First up is David Beckham bodywear, which he will launch with a license partner, possibly as early as this fall. He’ll also introduce in February a new men’s fragrance, called Homme by David Beckham, his third from partner Coty Inc. More projects are on the drawing board, adds Simon Fuller, the music industry impresario behind Pop Idol, American Idol and the Spice Girls, who is now managing the business interests of Beckham and his equally enterprising wife, Victoria.
“David and I have a number of ambitious and exciting ideas in development across a broad range of categories,” says Fuller. “The next 10 years will see David evolve into being recognized not just as an iconic sports figure, but also as an important entrepreneur.”
Already, Beckham’s roster of endorsements have included Emporio Armani, Adidas, Electronic Arts, Diet Pepsi, Yahoo, Castrol, M&S, Motorola and Police sunglasses, making him the fifth-highest-paid athlete in the world last year, with $43.7 million in salary and endorsements, according to Forbes. But now, those efforts will double as promotions for Brand Beckham—with even Adidas ads carrying a new David Beckham logo designed by Alasdhair Willis, founder of Announcement Creative and husband of designer Stella McCartney.
“With many of the partners I have worked with, it’s been important I don’t just attach my name to a project. I want to get involved in the process and have an influence over the end product,” says Beckham of his upcoming merchandising initiatives.