The largest supplier of athletic shoes in the world, Nike, has signed a dynamic partnership with a Nigerian customs design company Layerx to champion the twin causes of culture and environmental sustainability. This collaboration promises to reshape the future of fashion and athletics by blending the best of both worlds. A shared commitment to sustainability lies at the heart of this partnership. Being a company with a growing focus on eco-consciousness, Nike is tapping into Layerx’s expertise in sustainable design and cultural insights. Together, they aim to create products that not only perform exceptionally but also have a minimal environmental footprint.
Speaking to news correspondents on September 17, 2023, Layerx co-founder, Gbadeyan Olaoluwa, said that Layerx stands out by offering customized urban fashion items that celebrate culture, allowing individuals to wear their heritage proudly with their hand-painted shoes. Also, the brand is committed to advocating for sustainable practices, and supporting initiatives that combat climate change, making their items not only visually stunning but also socially responsible. This partnership is expected to produce a line of products that celebrates diverse cultural influences from around the world with the three main designs of “Jumps to Kicks,” “Ant F1,” and “Lagos Sketch.”
Layerx wants to share the Nigerian culture globally.
Artist and co-founder Gbenga Adeku told the media that the firm wants to share the Nigerian culture globally. “Nigeria is a very great country, we have a very marvelous culture, I believe we have one of the most resilient people,” he said. He added that this was why the company even chose Nike in the first place. It was because the story of Nike promotes the mentality of “just do it, that means just keep it moving.”
In his words, he said the mentality makes one know that there are no roadblocks, there are no negativity, and there is nothing that can stop one regardless of the circumstances. He thinks that a lot of Nigerians possess just that, and they tend to do stuff even when the situation might not be favorable. Even when the conditions might seem antagonistic, Nigerians find a way to make do against all odds. And Nigerians are regarded as one of the most resilient people in the world.
Both firms seek to set new industry standards.
This partnership with Layerx is more than just a business move. The co-founder stated that it is a statement of intent. By tapping into the vast cultural tapestry and prioritizing sustainability, they aim to set a new industry standard. Influencer collaborator, Bolarinwa Yusuf popularly known as “HorlarofLagos,” told the media that once people saw the design, they were tempted to ask what inspired it. “This looks nice,” he quoted them as saying. He then said that one can tell them the story so that the person knows about the culture. By doing so, one has shared a part of one to the other person.
Consequently, the company is trying to spread the culture globally and that is why it chose a global product and a global brand. Speaking at the launch of the product, Olaoluwa stated that it was important for the world to hear Nigeria stories and know about their culture and resilience. He added that the partnership would further make sneakers desirable to all classes of people. The messages on it would literally resonate with both the older and younger generation.
Customizations on sneakers pass the message to others.
On his part, Adeku said that the launch design started with the Lagos story, noting that there are lots of grass-to-grace stories and tales of how people’s lives turn around pursuing their dreams. He said that HorlarofLagos has spearheaded the sneakers culture for many years. “We are also passionate about people being aware of the dangers of having a decaying environment,” he said. Because of this, the company passes the message through the customizations on the sneakers. He noted that what the firm is doing is similar to what the Afrobeat is doing, in the fashion sense.