Van Heusen Enters UFC’s Octagon Dressed For Success As Official Partner
Wednesday, August 1, 2018 at 07:50AM
NYSportsJournalism.com in MMA, PVH, UFC, UFC, Van Heusen, sports marketing

By Barry Janoff

July 31, 2018: Although some people might see Van Halen as a better fit, UFC and PVH Corp. have other plans.

The MMA circuit has signed a deal naming PVH division Van Heusen as UFC’s first “official men’s dress furnishings provider,” with the alliance so significant that PVH called it the “most robust 360-degree marketing effort to-date for the Van Heusen brand.”

Financial terms of the pact, which officially launches this week leading to UFC 227 on Aug. 4 in Staples Center, Los Angeles, were not released.

Multi-platform marketing — supporting the Van Heusen Flex Collection — will get major play on TV via an anchor commercial, “Office MMA,” starring UFC bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw and UFC welterweight contender Stephen Thompson.

"Tapping into the burgeoning popularity of MMA, as well as two of its premier athletes in TJ Dillashaw and Stephen Thompson, was hugely important to us as we look to reach the next generation of Van Heusen men,” Ken Duane, PVH’s CEO-Heritage Brands, said a statement.

In the TV spot, the two men are seen in an office setting wearing clothing from the Van Heusen Flex Collection. The scene quickly escalates from sedate to competitive within an Octagon, with both men showing they can perform their most accomplished MMA moves while wearing Flex items.

The Van Heusen Flex collection of men’s shirts and pants “incorporates stretch features to give men a corporate business-like look without sacrificing the range of motion or comfort found in casual clothing,” per the brand.

According to Paul Asencio, UFC svp-global partnerships, “The Van Heusen Flex Collection is perfect business attire for UFC athletes outside of the Octagon because it allows them to wear stylish and flexible business apparel without compromising their comfort, individual style or look.”

The spot will air across national and local cable TV, including NFL Network, Comedy Central, Fox Sports 1 and TruTV; programmatic and Pay-Per-View shows; video on-demand on Hulu, DirecTV Now, Sling TV and Roku.

Digital will hit news and sports Web sites such as Bleacher/Report and ESPN. Display ads will be placed on select retailer sites.

Van Heusen branding will be featured inside UFC Octagon at UFC 227 where Dillashaw is scheduled to fight Cody Garbrandt.

Van Heusen will take over UFC's homepage on Aug. 4 to coincide with the event.

The campaign also features in-store and in-gym signage at various retailers and Life Time athletic resort locations to include UFC’s logo along with images of Dillashaw and Thompson.

In addition, “MMA Office” will air as pre-roll on UFC’s YouTube channel, and Van Heusen creative featuring Dillashaw and Thompson will be incorporated across UFC’s social media channels.

“Van Heusen has a history of firsts, and our partnership with UFC adds to that impressive list,” said Duane.

“Tapping into the burgeoning popularity of MMA, as well as two of its premier athletes in TJ Dillashaw and Stephen Thompson, was hugely important to us."

“We were first-to-market with our innovative Flex Collar and are eager to highlight our Flex collection in an authentic, surprising, and first-of-its-kind way: becoming UFC’s first Official Men’s Dress Furnishings Provider.”

The Van Heusen Flex Collection includes dress shirts, pants, suit separates and sport shirts ($50– $220), available at retailers including Kohl’s, JCPenney, Macy’s as well as VanHeusen.com.

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