Fashion & Style: This year Lacoste celebrates its 75th anniversary, marking a milestone for the longtime luxury brand as it kicks off its latest campaign to celebrate the game of tennis.
In 1933, the luxury company Lacoste was born of French heritage through the inspiration of French tennis player Rene Lacoste. Rene promised to win an important tennis match and in a nod to his tenacity on the court was soon known as the crocodile, which won't relinquish its prey. A few years later, Lacoste placed the iconic Lacoste brand crocodile emblem, designed for him by a friend, on the collared polo shirts he had created to replace the stiff-collared shirts worn by tennis players at that time. The shirts were so successful, that the idea soon became the basis for the current lines of products, which are all marked with the Lacoste crocodile and which now include clothing, footwear, perfume, leather goods, watches, eyewear and still the popular tennis shirts.
The Lacoste Company is still operated by the Lacoste family. Rene's son Bernard took over the reins at Lacoste in 1963 as the chairman at Lacoste and felt that the croc symbol has been crucial to the Lacoste success.
"I think it has become something mythical and that it represents for the consumer a more quality product," Bernard says. In keeping with family tradition, when Bernard passed away in 2006, he had already given over the ruling of the company to his younger brother, Michel.
Throughout the history of Lacoste, the company has undergone many partnerships to develop a wide range of high-quality sports apparel, most notably with Izod. The partnership dissolved in the early 1990s due to Izod's issues with quality control.
Just as 75 years ago, Lacoste developed the first example of performance clothing in sports, Lacoste is looking forward to being an integral part of the next 75 years in tennis, acknowledging that although the game has changed and will likely to continue to change, the elegance and luxury of the brand has remained the same.
For its 75th anniversary, Lacoste looks back on its tennis history by fast-forwarding 75 years to the year 2083 and how tennis will be played in the future. A space age tennis player shows off his new moves on a new court. Lacoste keeps its tennis background strong while looking forward to a future game of tennis and in another video explores champion tennis player, Andy Roddick's vision of tennis past present and future. Other videos explore the connection Lacoste brings to the game of tennis of the past and tennis of the future through its present as a sportswear powerhouse.
The dedication of Lacoste to tennis is revealed in all its forays into fashion, beginning with the iconic crocodile and following through in all its high-quality products.