Mitre: A British Sporting Powerhouse with an Illustrious History
Mitre has been a prominent name in the global sports equipment industry for more than 200 years. Famous for its long-standing association with the beautiful game, it’s synonymous with high-quality footballs and various items of equipment.
The company, which began its journey in a leather tannery, has showcased a relentless passion and love for the game of football throughout its evolution.
Mitre is not only focused on football; it also makes balls and equipment for other sports. And despite having to compete with international brands such as Nike and Adidas, it is still regarded as a big hitter in the realms of both professional and grassroots football.
Today, the brand is as strong as it ever was. Indeed, until recently, the Huddersfield-based company was the official ball supplier of the English Football League.
The Soccer Store is home to many of Mitre’s most popular footballs, so we thought we’d create a company profile that covers everything this highly respected brand has achieved during its 200-year history.
A Long History of Achievements
Origin and Early History
Founded in 1817 by Benjamin Crook, Mitre originally began as a tannery in Huddersfield, England.
The company name, "Mitre," was inspired by the traditional Christian bishop's headdress due to Crook's friendship with the local bishop.
Expansion and Diversification
Initially focused on footballs and rugby balls, Mitre expanded into cricket, soft leather and bags in 1959‚ first introducing sports footwear in 1960.
It became the official ball supplier for the English Football Association in 1966, and for the following four decades, the FA Cup Final was played with a Mitre ball.
Mitre introduced synthetic footballs to the FA Premier League in 1992, a permanent replacement for heavier leather balls.
Brand Endorsements and Sponsorships
Notable figures like Denis Law and Muhammad Ali have endorsed Mitre over the years. Indeed, during the 1950s and 1960s, Mitre was considered to be the UK’s premier sports retail brand.
The company supplied the official ball to the 1987 Rugby World Cup and became the apparel sponsor for the England national netball team in 2003 during the Netball World Championships in Jamaica.
Mitre also agreed several individual sponsorships with football and cricket athletes, including Shane Warne in 2006.
Global Reach and Innovations
Mitre established a presence in Argentina in 2000, sponsoring several Primera División clubs, and expanded further in South America in subsequent years, including signing an agreement with the El Salvador national football team in 2008.
The brand launched the "Revolve" football ball for the EFL in 2007 and finally re-entered apparel markets with kit deals.
Mitre’s impressive "Hyperseam” technology was introduced in 2015, securing its legacy as an official ball supplier in various leagues, including the Scottish Premier League.
Social Initiatives and Achievements
Mitre, alongside UNICEF ambassador George Weah, donated 10,000 footballs to underprivileged children in Liberia and Iraq in 2004.
In 2015, the brand began personalizing footballs as gift options for young fans and announced various sponsorship deals. And in 2016, Mitre announced its first sponsorship agreement with a female footballer — Beatrice Tan.
In 2017, the iconic "Delta" ball design was reinstated as the official match ball of the English Football League.
The "Legend Returns" campaign was launched to promote the reinstatement, unveiling the football live on Soccer AM and at Wembley Stadium.
Mitre Football Products
As well as footballs, Mitre designs, manufactures and distributes a comprehensive range of sports equipment, much of which is aimed and professional and grassroots football clubs.
As well as apparel, Mitre produces football goals, kitbags, cones and markers, pitch and linesman flags, shin guards, water bottles and gloves.
And there’s more to Mitre than football-related products. The brand makes balls for netball, rugby, handball and basketball.
Mitre’s Top Footballs
It’s not surprising to see so many amazing footballs leave Mitre’s conveyor belt in recent years. After all, the brand was the English Football League’s official supplier for many years.
Synonymous with performance, reliability and durability, these incredible footballs prove that Mitre is still one of the world’s most respected football brands.
The Mitre Impel
The Mitre Impel is a popular training football — particularly among schools and grassroots organisations. Its 30-panel machine-stitched panel is as durable as it is reliable. And its soft-foam backing delivers protection and performance.
The Mitre Calcio
The Mitre Calcio is quite simply one of the most popular training footballs for artificial surfaces in the world. Featuring 3.5mm EVA soft-touch foam and a 30-panel construction, it’s perfect for short-sided games. It also comes in a choice of yellow or white.
The Mitre Ultimatch Max
This exceptional match football delivers on all fronts, yet it’s available at a surprisingly low price. The Mitre Ultimatch Max has a FIFA Quality Badge, which means it has excelled in the toughest possible test conditions. Featuring enhanced grip and Mitre’s Hyperseam technology, it’s the perfect football for Saturday and Sunday league matches.
The Mitre Ultimax Pro
The Mitre Ultimax Pro is a professional FIFA-accredited match football, and it’s one of the best in the world right now. Featuring a thermally bonded, four-panel outer later for increased accuracy, this football has one of the best sweet spots in the business. And the addition of Hyperflow grooves delivers the most responsive feel yet.
The Soccer Store is proud to be associated with Mitre and its exceptional range of footballs. Together, we’re taking grassroots football to the next level.