Sportswear brand Admiral - which was worn by the England Football team in the 1980s - has been bought by a Manchester company.
Admiral Sportswear, a new business formed by Jonathan Hamburger and former Umbro and JD Sports executive Tim Gardiner, has acquired the rights to the iconic brand for Europe, the Middle East and North Africa.
The pair plan to revive its glory years, both as a fashion and sportswear brand.
Originally established in Leicester as Cook & Hurst Limited, Admiral was incorporated in 1914, when the company designed and manufactured underwear for the British army.
Its sporting heritage is strong too, with teams including Manchester United, Leeds United and Tottenham Hotspur wearing its kit over the years.
Admiral was also the first sports brand logo to appear on the England national football team kit.
The new owner's plan includes the launch of three product collections for Admiral; Football Performance for the pro and amateur markets, Admiral 'Gold' a brand new fashion concept and Lifestyle, including retro inspired “back catalogue” Admiral products, drawing on Admiral designs from the 70s and 80s.
Managing director Jonathan Hamburger said; “We’re delighted to have acquired such an iconic, British sports brand, with nearly 100 years of heritage and believe the opportunities to re-energise and grow the brand throughout Europe are endless.
"An important part of the future success of the brand is the building of a strong and experienced team for Admiral and I’m delighted to have Tim Gardiner on board as we now look to develop our plans for the UK and the appointment of licensees throughout the territories we own in Europe and other countries”
Mr Gardiner added: "“Having worked with the new owners of the Admiral brand on their plans prior to the completion of the acquisition it became clear that, with the introduction of a defined plan for the brand, coupled with the inherent demand for heritage sports brands, this was a great business to be part of.
“Introducing both Performance sports and Lifestyle collections for Admiral, means we stay true to the brand’s heritage and positioning but evolve its reach into new channels of distribution."
Samantha Livesey, head of Intellectual Property at Pannone advised Admiral Sportswear on the deal. She said: "It is excellent that this very British sporting icon is in the hands of a first class management team that is dedicated to revitalising the brand.”