Notably, in 2018, Nike, one of the biggest sportswear companies with a current brand value of $32.4 billion (USD) in the world, added a hijab product to its line specifically produced for women athletes. The hijab, called ‘Pro Hijab” was in great demand by Muslim sport lovers.
With this promising initiative, the aim of the brand was to ensure that women do not encounter any barriers in their sporting lives and to inspire young women. Remarkably, Nike achieved that goal. Moreover, Nike has become the inspiration for many brands and organizations offering modest sportswear collections to their consumers. Toronto Raptors is just one of them.
More recently, Toronto Raptors, the only Canadian team to compete in the American National Basketball League NBA, has begun to produce branded sports hijab as part of their “inclusivity initiative” program.
Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, the owner of the Canadian team that won the first NBA league championship in team history in the 2018 – 2019 season, announced that the idea to produce branded hijabs was taken after the playoffs.
The company’s Marketing Director, Jerry Ferguson, said the decision was inspired by a group of Muslim women in the Toronto area who get together to play basketball every Sunday and advocated for Muslim women to participate in sports.
The Toronto Raptors are taking steps to be more fan-inclusive with the unveiling of their officially branded sports hijab with this initiative.
Amreen Kadwa, founder of Hijabi Ballers, said that Toronto is a multicultural and ideal place for such a plan and they welcome the decision. More than 400,000 Muslims live in the Toronto area.