With the recent rumours swilling about that Italian ‘giants’ Macron are to be Rangers kit makers, even despite the mischief-making nature of this story, Rangers fans are probably wondering why our last partner was little-known Danes Hummel and now we’re being linked to a barely heard of Italian group.
Sadly it’s rather simple – Adidas, Nike, Reebok and Puma, to name just four, are reluctant to get involved with Rangers until one thing is resolved:
Effectively Rangers’ problem is the legal wrangling over who makes the kits, who can sell them, who gets what percentage, and how much is controlled, still, by Sports Direct, makes getting involved with Rangers as the kit partner a sadly poisoned chalice right now.
Adidas or Nike or Umbro don’t want the nonsense of this pest to deal with, affecting their profit margins as main manufacturer – or worse yet, not being able to sell their Rangers shirts anywhere other than Sports Direct.
Rangers were actually banned from selling Hummel kits from this summer onwards, in a court of law, with Ashley still running the rule and winning legal cases.
He has a deeply unpleasant monopoly over Rangers’ retail sector, given him in the worst commercial move ever made by Rangers when then-CEO Charles Green essentially gave him the keys to our kingdom.
We weren’t as harsh on Green as many Rangers fans were, but that decision has deeply, horribly, badly cost us over the years, and was the biggest blunder made in the years since 2012.
And it’s why only the lesser makers are interested – because they want the Rangers name to help promote their brand and are willing to lose out on a bit of profit in the name of growth.
Until Rangers are free of Ashley, which is a gargantuan problem, this might just be the lot for the foreseeable future.