Under Armour To Replace Majestic As Official MLB Uniform Maker
Under Armour and Major League Baseball on Monday announced a 10-year agreement, beginning in 2020, that calls for Under Armour to manufacture all on-field apparel for big league teams.
Majestic Athletic and Nike are the current makers of that apparel—Majestic makes jerseys and Nike the base-layer gear—and those deals run through 2019. One report stated that Majestic could decide to drop out earlier than 2019 as MLB's official supplier, or perhaps Majestic would be sold to Under Armour.
Under terms of the agreement—financial terms were not disclosed—beginning in the 2020 MLB season, Under Armour will be the exclusive MLB provider of all on-field uniform components including jerseys featuring prominent Under Armour branding, baselayer, game-day outerwear, and year-round training apparel.
Fanatics, meanwhile, will manufacture and sell the Under Armour MLB merchandise that will be sold to fans, according to a news release.
Baltimore-based Under Armour made the announcement Monday at the Winter Meetings in nearby Washington, D.C.
"There's nothing more sort of iconically American that the sport of baseball," Under Armour founder and CEO Kevin Plank told CNBC. "It's an easy step for our company and really makes sense for the brand."
"We are excited to build on our partnership with Under Armour, a powerful global brand that continues to grow exponentially, and Fanatics, an industry leader in sports licensing," MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said in a news release. "Under Armour’s marketing ability and brand status are a perfect fit to showcase our players and provide an even stronger connection between our game and its young fans and players."
"We love the idea that Under Armour's a brand that young people like," he told CNBC. "We like the emphasis on performance, athlete performance (that is) huge for us. And quite frankly we found Kevin's energy to be really appealing in terms of trying to move our sport forward."
The agreement will put a logo on the front of major league jerseys for the first time—on the right side of the chest, above the nickname or logo, meaning for a Yankees jersey, for example, the Under Armour logo will be right above the interlocking NY.
"Under Armour is proud of our long-standing relationship with MLB and we look forward to this exciting next chapter. This is a watershed moment for the Under Armour brand as this partnership with MLB and Fanatics furthers our collective dedication to bringing passion, energy and innovation to the game of baseball," Plank said in the news release. “Under Armour’s goal is to engage and excite MLB’s incredibly diverse fan-base across America and around the world, and grow the game for the next generation of great athletes.”