Agent’s Zeros: New Balance Expands Sneaker Endorsements With Rich Paul

CBx Vibe:New Balances” Wale

By Gary J. Nix

  • Klutch Sports Group CEO, Rich Paul, signs endorsement deal with New Balance
  • Projections suggest the global sneaker market will be worth $120B by 2026

Michael Jordan. LeBron James. Stephen Curry. When it comes to sneaker endorsement deals, more often than not, we are talking about what athlete was signed by what company. Now, we may have a new category of contender to the endorsement game, the sports agent. This is demarcated by the agreement between sports apparel and footwear giant New Balance and super agent Rich Paul, as the global sneaker market will be worth $120 billion by 2026.

Why This Matters: Companies have been slowly but steadily realizing the monetary value of our sneaker culture. Furthermore, this kind of multi-industrial flux provides multiple opportunities for successful careers based on the power that (sub)culture(s) enable for businesses.

One on hand, the power of relationships in business is on high display. There is no doubt that Rich Paul’s relationship with NBA superstar LeBron James played a part in Paul’s endorsement deal. Granted, Paul has built his own success in business. However, the friendship between him and James played a significant role in the existence of Klutch Sports itself. The combination of effective work and strong relationships consistently garner the best results.

Additionally, the spotlight being shown on the viability of being a sports agent opens the doors to new careers in the sports business sector for those who are interested. Finally, the symbiosis between sports and culture has always been powerful. Thus, this extension of endorsement deals is another point of connectivity that must be explored.

Situational Awareness: A growing number of examples of the monetization of culture like this have appeared more and more. The goal, as always, is to ensure that a fair share of revenues gained through buying trends created by said culture(s) are not unfairly vultured. In this case, the sneaker industry is poised to experience a 70% increase in worth. Yet, the money is not funneling through to the community at large that is responsible for this boom. This gap found at the intersection of business and culture must be changed for businesses to remain competitive or even thrive long-term.

CBx Vibe:New Balances” Wale


Gary J. Nix

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