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Nike, Clarks and the African Diaspora - marketing to niche communities

Updated: Feb 22, 2023

Last week both Nike and Clarks announced collaborations with influencers from the African diaspora. Emphasising the importance of Africa as a market, the diaspora as a core audience and the impact and reach across countries and industries.


As part of the 40th-Anniversary celebrations of the iconic Air Force 1, Nike Partnered with Afrochella co-founder and CEO, Abdul Karim Abdullah to release the, “Little Accra” sneaker. Focusing on the shoe’s spiritual home of New York City and the diverse communities that form its population.

The area of focus, Little Accra, is an area in the Bronx near 167th Street that is home to a large Ghanaian diaspora. This enclave and its culture inspire this new AF-1 colour-way and its details. The Air Force has played a major part in NYC’s street culture since its introduction.

It's all in detail.

The tongue and heel panels nod clearly to Little Accra, and insoles read ‘Sharing Stories’ and ‘Building Community’. Elevated finishing touches include colours that represent Ghanian culture and vibrancy. (


Labrum London’s Foday Dumbuya has joined forces with Idris Elba to create a Commonwealth Games kit collection for Sierra Leone. The collection boldly champions Sierra Leone’s national colours of green, white and blue with wavy lines that draw inspiration from the waves coming back to the land.

The collection includes formal and sport-focussed outerwear, bottoms, headwear and a collaborative iconic Clarks Originals Desert Boot, with the collection fronted by Chelsea defender Trevoh Chalobah and Triple Jumper Jordan Aki-Sawyerr. (

"We are finally being globally welcomed for what we have always known we possessed: a wealth of cultural agency and influence. We wanted this kit to represent the real style of the Salone people.

Through collaborations such as this, we aim to raise Sierra Leone’s cultural global status by showcasing the country’s deep wealth of talent."
Idris Elba & Foday Dumbuya

Celebrating and championing heritage and culture.Brands recognise the importance of creating with cultural influencers that transcend borders as this helps to integrate into communities for the long term. Entering new markets, uncovering opportunities, demonstrating representation and real storytelling (from sources audiences listen to).

With a median age of 25, the African continent is the youngest in the world. The African population will continue to grow, so there is no time like the present to build these connections.

Time is of the essence.

Brand | Culture | Marketing | Strategy


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