UPDATE: Things have taken an interesting new turn in the legal action from Roger Federer and his current sponsor UNIQLO against Nike and its use of the “RF” logo; the logo which the ex-tennis world champion previously claimed adamantly was his.
Uniqlo spokesman Aldo Liguori revealed in an interview with Swiss newspaper 20 Minuten that the apparel company has “no plans” to acquire the logo from Nike, even though the deal lapsed earlier this year in March, despite what Federer had told his fans last year. While the departure from the classic “RF” logo might come to the disappointment of many long-standing followers of the eight-time Wimbledon champion, the player himself seems to welcome this move forward, saying in an interview in April: “To be quite honest, I just feel like we have some awful tennis-looking outfits sometimes. They’ve just gone too far in the wrong direction. They want to make it look too much like a modern tennis shirt that is completely wrong, in terms of designs. Like a truck drove over it — or they’re just going to come up with funky graphics, which I think in a sport of tennis, that has such a rich history…you know, the tennis polo is very iconic.”
ORIGINAL POST (July 4, 2018): Having just signed a huge sponsorship deal with UNIQLO — reportedly priced somewhere between $300 million USD and $410 million USD — tennis legend Roger Federer is clashing with Nike over his trademark. Federer had been signed to Nike for the majority of his career, with the U.S.-based brand still owning the rights to his signature “RF” logo.
Speaking at Wimbledon recently, Federer discussed the branding: “The “RF” logo is with Nike at the moment, but it will come to me at some point. I hope rather sooner than later, that Nike can be nice and helpful in the process to bring it over to me. It’s also something that was very important for me, for the fans. They are my initials. They are mine. The good thing is it’s not theirs forever. In a short period of time, it will come to me.”
Despite the rocky-sounding relationship, Federer did reveal that he could sign a shoe deal with Nike. At Wimbledon, the Swiss player wore Nike sneakers on-court as UNIQLO does not produce tennis footwear. “For now, I will be wearing Nike. They have shown interest to have a shoe deal with me, as well. Ties are not broken there. I have deep roots with Nike. I’ve had a great relationship over the last 20 years. But everything is open.”
In other Wimbledon news, adidas players are taking to the court in the brand’s latest Palace collaboration.