Schaub loses 6 sponsors in light of Reebok deal

December 10, 2014

According to a recent podcast by UFC Heavyweight Brendan Schaub, he has lost 6 sponsors due to the recent UFC-Reebok uniform deal.  On The Fighter and The Kid podcast this week, Schaub claims that he had made twice what the UFC pays him from sponsors.

Schaub lost to Travis Browne at UFC 181 this past Saturday.  Schaub made $32,000 as disclosed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.

If we are to believe this to be correct, Schaub would have made six figures with a win plus his sponsorship money.  Even without the win, Schaub would be making close to six figures.

(h/t:  MMA Mania)

Payout Perspective:

We might see more stories like Schaub’s in the coming months as the Reebok deal goes into effect in July.  Certainly, current sponsors may seek to leave the UFC as they might revisit their respective marketing budgets and either find fighters in other organizations to sponsors or leave the MMA landscape altogether.  MMA Fighting has an interesting perspective on the Reebok deal from managers with UFC clients.

The obvious concern about the Reebok deal is that fighters will lose money from sponsors without knowing what they will be earning through this new arrangement with the UFC.  Furthermore, managers are not able to say whether the Reebok deal will be better or worse than their current earning potential.

UFC-Reebok uniform deal worth $70M per report

December 4, 2014

Gareth Davies reports that the UFC-Reebok uniform deal announced on Tuesday is worth $70 million dollars.  The 6 year pact makes Reebok the official clothier for the mixed martial arts promotion.

While the deal has been described as a positive “game changer” for the UFC, it has been criticized for the elimination of all other sponsors and the new function of UFC rankings which will dictate how fighters are paid via the new system. The UFC has posted details of the deal on its web site.

Here are comparisons to uniform deals in other sports:

MLS:  Adidas estimated $25M per year through 2018.  An initial 10 year $150M deal was extended in 2010 reflecting a 66% increase and the new deal is valued at $200M

NFL:  Nike estimated $220M per year.  The deal is estimated at $1.1B dollars for 5 years which began in 2012.  Previously, Reebok had a 10 year $250M deal.

NBA:  Adidas estimated at over $400M per year.  The 2006 deal was for 11 years.

NHL:  Reebok estimated at $200M per year.  The deal is up in 2016 and hockey brand Bauer may make a play for the spot.

Payout Perspective:

So,is this a good deal?  Its clear that the UFC would not garner the amount of money one of the major leagues would command but assuming the report is correct, Reebok is paying the UFC approximately $11.67 million per year for the right to outfit UFC fighters.  One wonders if the deal will (or eventually will) include exclusivity for UFC gyms.  Reebok is big in the fitness/crossfit industry and the additional exposure would make sense.  For the UFC, it creates more opportunities for visibility and arguably legitimizes it as a sport.

UFC-Reebok announce 6 year sponsor deal

December 2, 2014

The UFC and Reebok announced the long-awaited fight uniform deal which will commence during International Fight Week July 2015.  The announcement came with many interesting details.

The UFC touted the announcement as its biggest non-broadcast contract ever.  Financial terms were not disclosed for the 6 year partnership which makes Reebok the exclusive uniform supplier and commercial outfitter.

One of the most compelling details of the deal is that fighter compensation will be tied directly with the UFC fighter rankings.  The rankings are often criticized, and there is no exact science to determine how fighters are ranked.  Moreover, unsaid but inferred from the structure, unranked fighters will benefit, little, if any from the deal.

Via ESPN:

The pay structure will allocate funds per fight, based on a tiered ranking system. Champions will receive the largest payment, followed by fighters ranked Nos. 1-5, 6-10, 11-15 and unranked. UFC’s official rankings are voted on by media outlets and are overseen by the company.

Starting with UFC 189, which coincides with International Fight Week, there will no longer be fight banners or any other types of sponsors aside from Reebok.  Fighters will be able to ascertain sponsorships outside of the Octagon but cannot be sponsored by any other company leading up to a fight or during it.

The UFC indicated that aside from “costs associated” with the sponsorship, the money goes directly to the fighters.

Here’s what we should expect at UFC 189 via MMA Junkie:

At each UFC event after the July rollout, a newly established team of UFC equipment managers will distribute to each fighter and cornerman a Reebok gear bag with fight shorts, walk-out jerseys, hoodies, T-shirts, fleece tops and bottoms, headwear, socks and shoes, among other items, which will be used throughout fight week and are intended for the athlete to keep after the event.

In addition, there is a charity component of the deal as a portion of the revenue from the UFC-Reebok line of products goes to Fight for Peace, a nonprofit aligned with the sportswear manufacturer.

The UFC indicated it had reached out to UFC fighters about this deal before it was announced.

The deal does not dismiss other sponsors, but one might assume that agents and managers will have a harder time finding sponsors for fighters outside of a UFC event.  Moreover, one of the prime attractions for most sponsors, the logo on the shirt/shorts, will go away.

Payout Perspective:

This is an interesting deal that will certainly garner scrutiny in the days to come.  For top-level fighters and current champions, the deal is favorable for them.  Of course, these are not the fighters to be concerned with as they have always be taken care of from various sponsors.  But, for those fighters that appear on prelims and Fight Nights, this new change could be a concern.  There are many unknowns at this point on what the pay structure will look like and only time will tell to see how fighters will benefit.  How much money will be allotted to fighters?

MMA Payout will have more on this deal.

UFC and Reebok to announce fighter uniform deal

December 2, 2014

MMA Junkie reports on a special announcement occurring this morning involving the UFC and Reebok.  The announcement will reveal the UFC’s long awaited, anticipated uniform deal.

MMA Payout will have more details after the press conference.  The live stream for the conference is at MMA Junkie.   It is expected that Ronda Rousey will be the center of the uniform deal as the UFC indicated this several months ago.

Black Friday, Cyber Monday, & Holiday Shopping Guide (2014)

November 28, 2014

In the spirit of the holidays, MMAPayout would like to share some great Black Friday and Holiday deals for our readers who have held off on their shopping to save a couple of bucks. Please feel free to share any other deals you find in the comments section. Enjoy!

EA Sports UFC:

EA_UFC_2014_Cover

Sony PS Store – $13.99 (with PS+), $19.99 (without PS+) for PS4 – (Digital Copy)

Microsoft Store – $13.20 (with Xbox Live), $39.99 (without Xbox Live) for Xbox One – (Digital Copy)

Amazon – $29.99 for PS4, $33.56 for Xbox One – (Physical Copy)

What makes this a great deal is that EA has not stopped supporting the game since the initial launch back in June. With slow sales and the fact that most video game companies don’t typically continue to update their game after the first few months, it has been a welcomed surprise how much work EA has continued to put into the game.

Not only have they continued to release patch after patch to fix the initial broken game-play, which negatively impacted its critic scores, but they’ve also continued to add more UFC fighters and content.  With that said, EA just recently announced that they will be releasing UFC Legends DLC in December.

 

WWE 2K15:

Sony PS Store – $39.99 on PS3, $59.99 on PS4 – (Digital Copy)

Microsoft Store – $29.99 on Xbox 360, $59.99 on Xbox One – (Digital Copy)

Amazon – $47.42 for PS4, $59.96 for Xbox One – (Physical Copy)

 

MMA/Boxing Apparel and Gear:

Site: www.ufcstore.com
Coupon Code: BLKFRI15 and BLKFRI20
Discount: 15% off (over $50) and 20% off (over $100)
Duration: Now

Site: www.ufc.tv
Coupon Code: FNF25 on November 24th, none needed on November 26th.
Discount: 30% off Fight Pass and 1 year subscription to UFC Mag w/ purchase of 1 year subscription
Duration: Now through December 1st

Site: www.tapout.com
Coupon Code: BF25
Discount: 25% off, free shipping orders over $75
Duration: Now

Site: http://secure.gracieacademy.com/
Coupon Code: n/a
Discount: 20% off, free shipping
Duration: Now through December 1st

Site: http://www.ringside.com/
Coupon Code: BFRI25
Discount: 25% off
Duration: Now

Site: http://shop.wwe.com/
Coupon Code: FRIDAY
Discount: 80% off merchandise, 20% off orders, free shipping on orders over 15$
Duration: Now until Nov 29th

Site: http://www.rootsoffight.com/
Coupon Code: n/a
Discount: 15%-50% off
Duration: Now through December 1st

Site: www.62gear.com
Coupon Code: black
Discount: 20% off orders over $30. Free shipping orders over $50
Duration: Now through November 29th

Site: http://www.breakpointfc.com/
Coupon Code: BPBLACK
Discount: 30% off
Duration: Now through December 1st

Site: http://www.cagesidemma.com/blfrsa.html
Coupon Code: n/a
Discount: Various sales
Duration: Now through December 2nd

Site: www.combatcorner.com
Coupon Code: n/a
Discount: 40% off
Duration: Now

Site: www.gameness.net
Coupon Code: n/a
Discount: Various sales
Duration: Now

Site: www.mmawarehouse.com
Coupon Code: n/a
Discount: 15-65% off
Duration: Now

Site: http://www.mmaoverload.com/
Coupon Code: n/a
Discount: Various sales
Duration: Now

Site: www.ringtocage.com/
Coupon Code: 30BFOFF14
Discount: 30% off, free shipping on order over $25
Duration: November 26th through December 1st

Site: http://rdxsports.com/
Coupon Code: BLACKFRIDAY
Discount: 20% off
Duration: Now until Nov 30th

Rockhold signs deal with Adidas

September 29, 2014

FighterXFashion reports that Adidas has signed on UFC fighter Luke Rockhold.  Although no terms of the sponsorship have been revealed, its anticipated that Rockhold should be repping the three stripes in preparation for his fight against Michael Bisping on November 8th.

Robbie Lawler is the only other UFC fighter to be sponsored by Adidas.

Payout Perspective:

The news of Rockhold’s deal might be seen as an expansion of Adidas’ Combat Sports Division.  The Three Stripes should translate well overseas as Rockhold’s fight against Bisping takes place

in Sydney, Australia as the main event for UFC Fight Night 55.  We’ll see if the signing means that Adidas is in the race to be the official uniform for the UFC.

Showtime stars in commercial for Reebok ZJet shoes

July 25, 2014

Anthony and Sergio Pettis star in a web commercial selling the Reebok ZJet running shoe.  Showtime recently signed a deal with Reebok.

The web commercial can be seen on Reebok’s YouTube page.  In the commercial, Showtime talks about persevering to be the best, becoming the UFC champ and dealing with pressure.  The video briefly shows the UFC Lightweight title.  Sergio also makes a brief non-speaking appearance.

The ZJet retails for $129.99.

reebok-anthony-pettis-shoe

H/t: FighterxFashion

Payout Perspective:

It appears that Showtime will be a part of the Reebok ZJet launch.  Commercials (which did not include Pettis) for the shoe were played during the Bellator telecast on Spike TV Friday night.  Pettis is a good-looking, well-spoken fighter and it would not be surprising to see more spots with Pettis selling Reeboks.

Robbie Lawler signs with Adidas Combat

July 24, 2014

Robbie Lawler has signed on with Adidas Combat prior to his fight with Matt Brown Saturday.  The deal comes on the heels of the recent launch of the Adidas-specific web site dedicated to combat sports.

There’s no word on whether Lawler will be able to wear the three stripes into the Octagon on network television Saturday.

Adidas is also the official sponsor of Resurrection Fighting Alliance, the organization headed by Ed Soares. It also sponsors Glory Kickboxers.

Payout Perspective:

Lawler becomes the first Adidas signee in recent memory.  It’s not clear whether it will start to target other fighters in the league.  Still no word on a UFC uniform deal but maybe we can throw Adidas as a possible uniform maker.  For those wondering, Under Armour announced its second quarter earnings and business is good as it exceeded analyst expectations. Although previously the front runner, if a deal were imminent, certainly we would have heard some rumblings in order to stir the pot for the stock even more.  Reebok could be a possibility as it has signed on Johny Hendricks and Anthony Pettis.  Adidas has worked with RFA for a while and its known as a possible feeder organization for the UFC.

Forbes.com reports on “lean” UFC sponsor market and Hendricks/Reebok deal

March 20, 2014

Forbes.com wrote a piece on Johny Hendricks and his sponsor Reebok in light of his victory in the Octagon at UFC 171.  Notably, one of the takeaways from the articl focused on the fact that Reebok’s main goal was not to sponsor MMA fighters but to develop Reebok’s Fitness Marketing division.

It was noted that Hendricks was sponsored by Reebok for the fight.  Hendricks indicated to Forbes how he had problems getting gear from past sponsors and was thankful to Reebok for helping him without any issues.

John Lynch, Vice President of Reebok Fitness Marketing told Forbes that Reebok’s focus is on fitness. The Hendricks sponsorship for his fight was a byproduct of this.  Lynch stressed that while Hendricks only fights 2 times a year, he’ll be training year around and that is where the sponsorship ties in.

Hendricks and Jamie Varner both participated in The Spartan Race.  The race is an obstacle course which tests competitors as they navigate various physical challenges throughout the race.  Reebok sponsors the event and eventually came into partnership with Hendricks and Varner for the event.  It was not until UFC 167 did Reebok officially sponsor Hendricks in his title fight against GSP.  UFC 171 was the second time it sponsored Hendricks.  Despite the continued relationship, Reebok maintains that it is sponsoring Hendricks and not the UFC.  “We’re with Johny, but we’re not sponsoring the UFC,” Lynch told Forbes.

The article, written by sports and entertainment attorney Darren Heitner was a mainstream narrative on Hendricks and painted the MMA sponsor landscape as “lean” while noting “obscure brands” such as Dynamic Fastener spreading its sponsor dollars to multiple fighters.

In addition to the Forbes article, Sports Agent Blog wrote an article this week on “Mega Brands” entering the UFC sponsorship landscape.  The post mainly focused on Jon Jones and his deal with Nike although it touched upon the Hendricks and Reebok deal.  The article reads directly opposite to Heitner’s article.  Ironically, Heitner founded the Sports Agent Blog.

Payout Perspective:

Lynch’s quote can be interpreted several ways.  He could be just clarifying Reebok’s role as a sponsor of Hendricks and not an “official” UFC sponsor.  It could also be a note to MMA agents that it is not looking to expand its sponsorship of fighters in the Octagon.

These are two interesting reads that tell us what most MMA fans already knew.  The sponsorship market is tight but for a few fighters that a few mainstream brands will sponsor.  It’s interesting to note Reebok’s strategy of casting its audience very broad as it builds its fitness niche.  While Reebok has been tied to Hendricks and has appeared in the Bellator octagon (Reebok also sponsors Rampage Jackson), its main emphasis is on fitness, not MMA per se.  Both Hendricks and Jackson have starred in Reebok commercials promoting its sportswear line.  Those commercials emphasized fitness and exercise although the Hendricks commercial emphasized the fact he was a fighter.  But the question is whether these brands would sponsor athletes in MMA like a Dynamic Fastener?  It appears not.

The sponsor issue is one of the reasons Dana White has proposed a UFC uniform.  But, we probably should cross off Reebok off the list of potential suitors as the uniform maker.

UFC 171: Payout Perspective

March 17, 2014

Welcome to another edition of Payout Perspective.  This time well be taking a look at UFC 171 at the American Airlines Arena in Dallas, Texas.

Hendricks wins vacant title

A scare with not making weight did not matter for Johny Hendricks as he defeated Robbie Lawler in the Fight of the Night.  For Hendricks, it was redemption from a controversial loss to GSP last time out.  Lawler was impressive in defeat but just didn’t have enough to win the title.

Hendricks was the top welterweight of the night as he will now look to a smorgasbord of challengers to the title which may include a couple fighters (Lombard, Woodley) on the card and one (Nick Diaz) that was in attendance.

UFC_171_event_poster

Woodley upsets Condit

Tyron Woodley may have moved to the top of the contender’s list for the welterweight division with his victory over Carlos Condit.  While the knee injury to Condit caused the stoppage, it should not take away from the fact that Woodley was impressive and can argue he is next in line for a title shot at Hendricks.

Attendance and Gate

As we reported on Sunday, the UFC announced its attendance at 19,324 for a live gate of $2.6 million.  The numbers reflect the largest U.S. crowd to see a UFC event.  The numbers bested the UFC’s last event in Dallas which did 17,428 for a $2.4 million gate at UFC 103.

There were no information yet on comps and the Texas Department of Licensing will confirm the numbers later this week.

Bonuses

The bonuses were awarded to Hendricks-Lawler, Ovince St. Preux and Dennis Bermudez.

Fight of the Night – Hendricks-Lawler

Performance of the Night – OSP (Von Flue!) and Bermudez.

Each fighter earned an extra $50K.  In addition, Harley Davidson ran a promotion in which one of the bonus winners could win a Harley Davidson based upon a fan vote on the UFC’s Facebook page.  Hendricks won the fan vote and a new motorcycle.

Sponsors

The usual suspects were in the Octagon including the official UFC sponsors of MetroPCS, Harley Davidson, Toyo Tires, Harley Davidson, Alienware, Corn Nuts as well as Bud Light taking the center of the Octagon.  Fram Auto Filters was the latest addition to Octagon signage.  In addition, Robbie Lawler’s sponsor, the Air Force Reserve also had signage in the Octagon.

The most notable sponsor for Hendricks was Reebok. Hendricks wore a shirt with the hashtag Reebokzquick.  Hendricks co-starred in a commercial featuring the Reebok fitness line in a recent commercial It was the second time that the clothing brand has sponsored him in the Octagon.  With Hendricks as champ, we can expect that Reebok will extend its sponsorship deal.  Hendricks was also sponsored by two official UFC sponsors: Corn Nuts and Alienware.

reebok-johny-hendricks-ufc-171-shirt

Diego Sanchez had a product tie-in where he wore a Training Mask during his workouts on the UFC Countdown show.

Myles Jury was sponsored by a Panini America and Dee Zee truck accessories on the front of his shorts.  According to its web site, Jury will be making an appearance for his Panini sponsor.

mylesjury_headshot

Tyron Woodley signed on with Affliction Clothing prior to UFC 171 (via FighterxFashion).  He also snagged a deal with Monster Headphones.

You don’t f*ck with #TheChosenOne Tyron Woodley (<href=”https://twitter.com/TWooodley”>@TWooodley)! Let’s get that title shot, eh? #UFC171 #MonsterOctagon pic.twitter.com/c1VZnFJSLV

— Monster Products (@MonsterProducts) March 17, 2014

The UFC had a “Vote for the T” Contest where fans had a chance to design a t-shirt for the UFC to market and sell for $30.

Post-UFC171 Headlines

Who’s next for Johny Hendricks?  A lot of debate swirling that Woodley, Hector Lombard or even Nick Diaz should face Hendricks next.  Diaz, who flew to Dallas courtesy of the UFC, was featured on the company’s Instagram account mocking Hendricks when it appeared he had missed weight and needed to retry.  Despite the showings of the other welterweights on the card, the appeal of Diaz is that he can sell a fight without even trying (i.e. we’re not talking Wolf Tickets).  But, the bottom line is that the show revealed that the welterweight is a very competitive division with many challengers to face Hendricks.

Odds and Ends

Unfortunately, the UFC 171 Prelims were on FS2 due to college basketball tournament action as the prelim fights were probably the best in recent memory.

The Von Flue Choke will be the most demonstrated move in BJJ gyms across the nation this week.

Hendricks marketed “BeardHeads” riffing off of his trademark facial hair. There was a sponsor giveaway associated with the gimmick as well.

I am not clear why Diego Sanchez was eating quail egg and steak tartare before a fight.  It seems very suspect.

The top cities that searched the name Johny Hendricks on Google were Oklahoma City and Montreal.

Google trends revealed that Johny Hendricks was not getting as many searches as when he fought Georges St. Pierre but UFC 171 was getting significant traffic.

If GSP does come back against Hendricks, it could be the Cowboy Stadium show that the UFC wants and a 1 million PPV buy event.

Conclusion

While the attendance and gate numbers are impressive for a show not featuring GSP/Anderson Silva or Cain Velasquez (note we excluded Ronda Rousey based on her last outing), it’s hard to conclude a big buy rate.  There was nothing that stood out in the promotion of this event despite it being for the vacant welterweight title.  Still, the Hendricks win puts him in a position to be groomed to be the next big draw for the UFC.  With the lack of a big name at the top, and the minimal buzz for the event, a buy rate of 300,000 would be solid.

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