Rangers to begin search for new kit supplier

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Rangers have kicked off their search for a new kit supplier for the 2018/19 campaign after they renegotiated their retail deal with Sports Direct.

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Kenny Miller poses with a Puma-made Rangers shirt. The Ibrox club have started work on a new kit supplier deal. Picture: John Devlin

Kenny Miller poses with a Puma-made Rangers shirt. The Ibrox club have started work on a new kit supplier deal. Picture: John Devlin

The Rangers board thrashed out a new merchandise deal with Sports Direct supremo Mike Ashley earlier this year and current suppliers Puma had until Thursday - the day of the Ibrox club’s AGM - to signal an interest in providing kits from next season onwards.

Supporters had organised a boycott of any Rangers merchandise prior to the Sports Direct deal being altered, with some fans groups selling alternative merchandise instead.

But chairman Dave King is hopeful that the Gers can benefit from the rearranged retail deal, telling the Herald: “The arrangements we have with Sports Direct means we can’t go to the market yet and within a certain timeframe.

“What we are doing at the moment is putting together the appropriate plans as to what the offering is we want to take to the market at that point in time.

“Just now it is pretty much preparation, whereas the situation with the kit is a little different. Puma are obliged to give us more information as to whether they want to extend that, and they have already done that.

“So, from [Friday] we will be actively entering negotiations on a kit provider, whether that be Puma or someone else.”

King pointed out that the deal with Sports Direct wasa ‘narrow and restrictive’, adding: “There are commercial opportunities that we haven’t exploited which we are looking at just now, and we think can be very significant going forward.

“A lot of that is around different products other than the replica kits. We are finding globally that there is a decline in the sale of replica kits, so it’s not a market we can continue to rely on for our growth.”

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