AFTER MONTHS OF SPECULATION, UFC HAS ANNOUNCED A LONG-TERM DEAL WITH REEBOK TO ACT AS ITS OFFICIAL APPAREL PARTNER FOR ALL UFC ATHLETES.
Under the deal, Reebok will become the exclusive global outfitter of the UFC, creating for the first time ever UFC ‘Fight Week gear’ and a ‘Fight Night kit’ for all UFC athletes.
The Reebok/UFC apparel line will be developed in conjunction with UFC and its athletes, including current Reebok athletes UFC Welterweight Champion Johny Hendricks and UFC Lightweight Champion Anthony Pettis.
In addition, UFC athletes will help Reebok to develop a new fight training-specific apparel collection.
Reebok will also be the exclusive apparel provider for the millions of UFC fans around the world.
MMA news sites across the U.S are reporting that fighters will no longer have their own sponsorship and will instead rely on the mandatory Reebok deal to generate a significant part of their income.
Matt O’Toole, president of Reebok, called it much more than a licensing agreement.
“It is a true collaboration between two great brands, which will not only give UFC a new and exciting look, but it will harness the global reach of both brands to also benefit young people around the world, particularly those at risk of being involved in crime and violence,” he said.
“Not only is mixed martial arts one of the fastest growing sports in the world, it is also one of the most challenging in terms of the dedication to training, overall fitness level and mental and physical toughness required. And nowhere is this on display more than in the UFC Octagon.”
Lorenzo Fertitta, UFC chairman and chief executive officer, added that with Reebok, UFC was changing the landscape of MMA.
“Working with another global brand with such a strong history in training and fitness will deliver long-term value for UFC athletes and their brands by elevating and further professionalizing the events and the sport.
“Every UFC athlete will benefit from high quality performance apparel specifically developed, tested and produced for MMA athletes. Never before has the sport had a global athletic footwear and apparel brand committed to investing so much in the research and development of products specifically for MMA.”
Additionally, the Reebok and UFC alliance also has a significant charitable component.
Starting in 2015, a percentage of sales from Reebok/UFC product will directly benefit Fight for Peace, an international NGO that uses boxing and martial arts, combined with education and personal development, to realize the potential of young people in communities that suffer from crime and violence.