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Fashion is the goal for Admiral licensees

Sportswear brand Admiral will launch a collection of casual sports-inspired fashion for spring 11 after the brand was sold to a new firm led by a group of senior sportswear executives.

Tim Gardiner, the former marketing director of JD Sports fashion, will lead the expansion of the brand into new product categories for spring 11 after he joined parent company Admiral Sportswear.

The brand was previously owned by International Brand Licensing, but it majored on selling performance football shirts and was best known for producing strips for various football clubs in the 1970s. It was originally founded in 1914, when it specialised in manufacturing underwear for the Armed Forces.

In the next few months Gardiner will begin selling Admiral Gold, a new sub-brand that will incorporate items such as polo shirts with a retro sports reference.

The collection will draw on Admiral’s archive. The brand will continue to produce performance shirts for amateur and professional sports teams. Gardiner said the spike in demand for heritage sports brands had prompted the launch of the new collection.

Wholesale prices have yet to be finalised, but retail prices will start at about £40 for a polo shirt and £100 for jackets.

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