July 23, 2015
UFC Bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw has signed a sponsorship deal with Everlast as announced by the company via tweet. Dillashaw is set to make his second title defense against Renan Barao this Saturday at UFC on Fox 16.
Despite the talk of the sponsorship market shrinking due to the Reebok deal, Dillashaw has a deal with Onnit and now Everlast.
— Everlast (@Everlast_) July 23, 2015
It was reported back in May that Dillashaw left his agents at MMA, Inc. to go at it alone. Unless Dillashaw has signed with another agent, it appears that he has secured this sponsorship on his own.
This is an interesting sponsorship since Dillashaw cannot wear any logos sporting the Everlast brand this week due to the new UFC outfitting policy. The good news for Dillashaw is that the brand is willing to work with him outside of the UFC umbrella. Perhaps a trend of seeking out the lower-weight divisions for sponsor deals.
December 22, 2011
Brock Lesnar has signed on with Everlast to an exclusive, multi-year equipment contract with the UFC Heavyweight. Lesnar will use Everlast equipment and be a pitchman for Everlast products.
In addition, Everlast will become the sponsor of Lesnar’s private gym, the DeathClutch Gym, in Minnesota. Primarily known as a boxing manufacturer for most of its history, the Lesnar signing shows a level of commitment to get into the UFC.
(photo via PR Newswire)
Some may recall that earlier this year, Everlast signed Jon Jones to a similar deal.
In addition to the Jones signing, Everlast entered into a contract with Bellator in March 2010 to be its exclusive equipment provider. The Lesnar move offers Everlast much more exposure as Lesnar is the PPV king of the UFC. Its hit or miss on how good a pitchman Lesnar might be but his identifiable physique and presence should make for good photo ads. The endorsement deal shows an aggressive marketing strategy by Everlast to sign two of the top UFC draws for its brand.
December 18, 2010
CNBC’s Darren Rovell reports that fight glove manufacturer, Everlast, has partnered with Sears Holdings in which Everlast would grant a license to Sears so that products will be sold exclusively at Sears and Kmart stores.
The move was due to the increased competition Everlast faced from other brands in the sporting good retail market.
From Rovell’s SportsBiz web site
It’s what facilitated the Everlast move. By selling to Sears, they get both the department store play and the mass retailer in Kmart. Of course, the sporting goods retailers aren’t going to want the Everlast brand much after this, but it doesn’t seem like the brand was getting much traction anyway outside of the equipment space because they don’t crossover into the fashion space like Nike, Adidas and Under Armour do.
Rovell spoke with Everlast CEO Neil Morton and President Adam Geisler about the strategy behind its partnership with Sears.
Adopting a “value market” strategy was due to the high threshold of entry into the higher end sporting goods stores. Essentially, Nike, Adidas and Under Armour are competing for spots within The Sporting Authority’s and Dick’s Sporting Goods. Thus leaving niche brands like Everlast off the prime spaces in a sporting goods store.
This is a good snapshot of the current state of the sporting goods market. Everlast, an established brand, is competing with bigger brands for market share. It has discovered that it has been priced out of traditional sporting goods stores. In an effort to remain viable as a brand, it has forged a partnership with Sears so that Everlast products are exclusive to those stores. This move appears to be a means of survival in a market where Nike, UA and Adidas are covering any and all sports. For Everlast, a brand synonymous with boxing, it recognized the growing trend and adjusted its business model to the trend.
It is also interesting that Everlast has changed its brand focus from boxing to “fighting” in an effort to include MMA. Another sign that MMA is taking over as the top form of combat sport.