Sportswear company Canterbury of New Zealand has secured a three-year licensing agreement with drinks company Diageo, owner of the Guinness brand.
The company - which was established in 1904 to make rugby kits for the New Zealand All Blacks - will create an 18 piece collection of Guinness branded men's Off-Field fashion wear, which will be distributed in the UK, Ireland, Central Europe and US.
The collection will be available for spring/summer 2009 and includes a selection of branded long and short sleeve rugby shirts, polo shirts, hooded tops and t-shirts.
Canterbury will also be creating Guinness branded replica rugby shirts, BaseLayer and training tracksuits. The apparel will feature variants of the Guinness logo and will include the date 1759.
"I'm pleased we have collaborated with Guinness on this project, both brands have a strong rugby heritage and the Guinness brand and associated logos lend themselves well to the casual style of Canterbury's men's Off-Field collection," said Joe Middleton, CEO at Canterbury. "I hope the relationship continues and develops into what I believe could be a successful global partnership."
David Derry, Diageo's licensing director, added: "With rugby taking on greater significance for Guinness internationally, I am confident that the Canterbury and Guinness collaboration will not only assist in extending the global reach of Guinness but will also help in contemporising Guinness fashion wear as the brand enters its 250th anniversary year in 2009."
Canterbury is also the current kit provider for the Irish national rugby team, as well as a number of other national sides including South Africa, Australia, US, Japan and Scotland. Guinness has had a close association with rugby through its sponsorship of the Guinness Premiership in England and other rugby-related tie ups around the globe.
The relationship between the two brands developed when Guinness became the shirt sponsor of the USA Eagles and the Singapore RFU.