Champion (sportswear)

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Industry Textile
Founded Rochester, New York, U.S.
(1919; 98 years ago (1919)) [1]
Headquarters Winston-Salem, North Carolina, U.S.A.
Number of locations
34 stores [2]
Area served
North America, Europe & Asia
Products Clothing, Sportswear, Footwear
Parent HanesBrands Inc.

Champion (or alternatively also stylized as Champion U.S.A) is an American manufacturer of clothing, specializing in sportswear. The brand is a subsidiary of HanesBrands Inc. (based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina), which was spun off by the Sara Lee Corporation. The company was originally based in Rochester, New York, prior to its acquisition by Sara Lee.[1]

"Champion" is HanesBrands' second largest brand with the namesake Hanes brand in first place. Other brands owned by HanesBrands Inc. are Playtex (its third largest brand), Bali, Just My Size, Barely There, Wonderbra, L’eggs, C9 by Champion, Duofold, Beefy-T, Outer Banks, Sol y Oro, Rinbros, Zorba and Ritmo.


The company was established in 1919 by the Feinbloom brothers. Champion soon signed an agreement with the Michigan Wolverines to produce uniforms for their teams. In the 1930s the company was renamed "Champion Knitting Mills Inc.", producing sweatshirts. Soon after, Champion products would be adopted by the US Military Academy to be used during training exercises and physical education classes.[3]

Champion produced uniforms for all the NBA teams during the 1990s, and some NFL teams during the 1980s and 1990s. It has also produced sportswear for many major colleges.[4] Champion was also the kit manufacturer of the Olympic basketball team that competed at the 1992 Summer Olympics.[3]

From the mid 1980s to the mid 1990s it was common to see girls and boys of all ages from kids, tweens, teens, college students, young adults and adults wearing champion sweatshirts over a turtleneck. Also girls of all ages from kids, tweens, teens, college students and adults wore oversized champion sweatshirts over leggings with slouch socks and sneakers especially Keds.

From 2008, Champion produced kits for Premier League side, Wigan Athletic, the Wales national football team and the jersey of the Greek basketball team,[5] also Pallacanestro Cantù, in Italy.

For many years Champion supplied the athletic uniforms for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. In 2001 Notre Dame signed a 5-year exclusive agreement with Adidas, which ended a partnership Champion had with the university that spanned over 50 years.[6]


Champion has manufactured and provided kit uniforms for the following teams and associations:

Current sponsorships[edit]


National Teams[edit]
Club teams[edit]


Past sponsorships[edit]

American/Canadian Football[edit]



Merchandising licensed manufacturer[edit]

The following is a list of the products made by the company in the licensed sports business:

Replica Jerseys[edit]

  • Canada United States NBA - all teams (1990–2002)
  • United States NFL - all teams (1980s–2000)
  • United States XFL - all teams (2001)


External links[edit]