• Loading stock data...
Tuesday, June 18, 2024

MLS Refreshes Sports Drink Category With BodyArmor

Sep 15, 2019; Carson, CA, USA; LA Galaxy forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic (9) celebrates a goal during the second half against Sporting Kansas City at StubHub Center. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports
MLS BodyArmor Partnership
Photo Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

BodyArmor has signed a four-year, multi-million dollar partnership with MLS which will make it the league’s official sports drink partner in the U.S. starting in 2020.

The sports drink brand replaces AdvoCare in the category for MLS, a partnership that had dated back to 2015.

Per the terms of the deal, BodyArmor sports drink will be featured on the sidelines of matches, in locker rooms and at training facilities, with the company’s logo being featured on everything from coolers to cups to towels.

MLS and BodyArmor will also work together on content and marketing integrations, some of which will feature MLS players and BodyArmor athlete partners.

The partnership will see its first activation at the Leagues Cup final in Las Vegas, a new competition between MLS and Liga MX that was launched this year.

MLS Senior Vice President of Business Development Carter Ladd said that conversations between the league and BodyArmor around a deal started earlier this summer.

Ladd noted BodyArmor’s quick ascendance in its category, saying, “their brand has a tremendous amount of momentum around it – I think there is an opportunity to draft off of it compellingly.”

The deal between MLS and BodyArmor is U.S. specific, allowing MLS to potentially sign another partner in the category in Canada or other parts of the world. Compared to the league’s previous deal with AdvoCare which made that company the official sports nutrition partner that could include bars, gels and shakes addition to hydration products, the deal with BodyArmor is specifically around sports drinks.

READ MORE: MLS, ESPN Move MLS Cup Final To ABC In 2019

AdvoCare will continue its jersey sponsorship with FC Dallas, which runs through 2020.

According to BodyArmor, its new deal with MLS is the largest multiyear partnership in the brand’s history.

It also comes at a pivotal time for the company, as it now ranks as the second-highest selling sports drink in convenience stores nationwide and is expected to eclipse $700 million in retail sales by the end of 2019. Coca-Cola Company purchased a minority stake in BodyArmor in August 2018.

BodyArmor has seen continuous growth in the sports sponsorships space in recent months, ranging from becoming the official sports drink of UFC to its continually growing athlete partner roster, which includes Mike Trout, Baker Mayfield, Naomi Osaka, and Diana Taurasi, among others. Kobe Bryant is also an investor in the company.

“A partnership with Major League Soccer – one of the fastest-growing sports leagues – allows BodyArmor to not only hydrate some of the best athletes in the world but also helps influence a younger generation of youth soccer players and showcases to them that there are better-for-you hydration options out there,” Bryant said in an emailed statement.

Currently, BodyArmor does not have any athlete partners who play in MLS, although James Harden recently invested in the Houston Dynamo. Megan Rapinoe and Giovani dos Santos are the only two soccer players currently on the company’s roster.

BodyArmor Vice President of Marketing Michael Fedele said the company will look at potentially partnering with some MLS players, as well as signing local partnerships with clubs across MLS.

READ MORE: MLS Opens Jersey Sponsorship Category To Sports Betting Brands

“We’re continuing to talk with MLS about how we can support the larger partnership – there’s nothing significant to announce, but this is a multi-year relationship that we expect to do a lot of activating around,” Fedele said.

Photo Credit: MLS

However, BodyArmor’s relationship with the NCAA is ending after just one season, being replaced in the official sports drink category by Coca-Cola sister product Powerade.

Fedele said there is no correlation between the ending of the NCAA relationship and this new deal with MLS. Its deal with the NCAA was a sublicense through Coca-Cola, he said.

“The two partnership deals have no correlation to each other, and was a strategic decision based on what was the best decision for the BodyArmor brand,” Fedele said. “When we think about our long-term strategic planning while looking at youth soccer participation levels, we think soccer in the U.S. is a place our brand should be in.”

Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read

Major Selling Point for Cities Pushing New Stadium Projects: Big Events

Several jurisdictions have mentioned events such as the Super Bowl as part of the impetus to build or renovate stadiums.
MLS Cup Eastern Conference First Round-Game 2-Columbus Crew SC at Atlanta United FC

The Highest-Paid MLS Coaches

Phil Neville and Gerardo Martino are tied atop the list, each earning $1 per year.
MLS: US Open Cup Final-Houston Dynamo FC at Inter Miami CF

The Highest-Paid MLS Midfielders

Only the top four highest-paid midfielders earn over $2 million a year.

Not Every MLS Team Gets to Strike Gold With a Messi Visit

Lionel Messi won’t play in Saturday’s match against the Whitecaps.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

The Major Implications of the SCOTUS Sports Betting Decision


Featured Today

Jan 3, 2022; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; General view of the NFL shield logo signage before the Pittsburgh Steelers host the Cleveland Browns at Heinz Field.

Odds Stacked Against NFL in Multibillion-Dollar Sunday Ticket Trial

Why the class action trial does not look promising for the league.
Jan 7, 2024; San Francisco, California, USA; Toronto Raptors forward Jontay Porter (11) takes a three-point shot against the Golden State Warriors during the second half at Chase Center.
June 9, 2024

‘Bound to Happen’: The Age of the Sports Betting Scandal Has Arrived

A banishment, betting scheme, and guilty plea all in one scandal-filled span.
June 8, 2024

‘Experimental in Nature’: The Rapid, Confounding Rise of Streaming Bundles

Here’s why confusion continues to outweigh solutions in the streaming package boom.
June 2, 2024

The Nostalgia Market: Michael Jordan’s Memorabilia Remains Coveted, With Caveats

Due to scarcity, and sometimes, items’ undisclosed whereabouts, this world has limitations.

Everything You Need to Know About the Schism Rocking Competitive Eating

The business story about hot dogs that you never knew you needed.
May 21, 2024

Lawsuit: Florida Football Coaches Made False NIL Promises

The quarterback says UF backed out of a $13.85 million NIL agreement.
June 12, 2024

Fanatics Dives Into Ultra-Niche With G League Trading Cards

The company will take over the NBA license in 2025.

How HOKA is Reimagining the NIL Relationship

HOKA, the renowned athletic footwear and apparel brand, is betting on a new reality with NIL.
May 8, 2024

Candace Parker Joins Shaq, Iverson in Court-to-Sneaker Boardroom Pipeline

Parker was named president of Adidas women’s basketball Wednesday.
April 16, 2024

The WNBA Has Huge Ambitions as Caitlin Clark Finally Comes Aboard

Commissioner Cathy Engelbert is aware of the moment in front of the league.
March 11, 2024

WWE Borrows From UFC, Puts On-Mat Advertising in the Ring

The wrestling outfit is learning from its MMA counterpart’s playbook under the TKO Group.
Drew Brees smiling while wearing hat
December 2, 2022

Drew Brees, PointsBet Pull Off Elaborate Lightning Publicity Stunt

The video racked up over 2 million views in about 12 hours.