Today, Adidas is officially entering the world of mixed martial arts, signing a multi-year deal with a smaller promotion. Executives from the Adidas global licensee Double D have confirmed that their Adidas Combat Sports brand will be partnering with the Resurrection Fighting Alliance (RFA).
The RFA will be putting on its ninth event in just a few days, and calls itself a “feeder league” for the UFC.
“I feel like it’s a good fit for them to sponsor our organization, and we have big plans on how we’re going to activate Adidas with RFA,” said RFA president Ed Soares in an interview with USA Today Sports.
Double D managing director Christophe Dessalles added that, “We’re going to try to grow the sport of MMA.”
“It’s a very young sport,” he continued. “And for me that’s one of my goals in the next five years, to try to work with Ed Soares at the RFA and the UFC and help grow the sport globally. There are some countries in Europe, such as France, where MMA is still not allowed. Hopefully we can change that.”
Dessalles added that the RFA was chosen because the promotion is keen on building talent from the “ground level,” and also because it is the only professional non-UFC organization to use the octagon.
RFA and Adidas’s first joint venture will take place this Friday at the StubHub Center in Los Angeles. It will air on AXS TV.
Adidas Combat Sports previously tested the MMA waters earlier this year, sponsoring UFC lightweight Leo Santos with an endorsement deal. The company is currently planning on launching a line of MMA products.