The UFC has announced that it will begin working with Amazon Merch on Demand for branded merchandise.
The collection, which is available on Amazon, includes licensed apparel like t-shirts, sweatshirts, long-sleeve shirts, and tank tops; as well as durable goods such as smartphone cases, workout products and bags. There are hundreds of models available, according to License Global.
Amazon has been building its print-on-demand capabilities for a few years now, and its partnership with a major global brand like UFC shows that there is a customer desire for print-on-demand.
“We’re thrilled to be working with an amazing company like Amazon to enhance our fan gear with a wide range of new products with original designs for UFC fans,” said UFC Senior Vice President Tracey Bleczinski. Global Consumer Products, according to License Global. . “UFC fans are deeply passionate and loyal, and our fan gear is an authentic way for them to show their love and pride for the sport and stay connected to the brand.”
The UFC had previously had a connection to Amazon through its partnership with Amazon-owned Zappos.com.
Amazon’s expansion into (and of) print-on-demand certainly indicates that the technology has a major place in the branded merchandise industry going forward. The model works well for some applications, such as small quantity orders and, in particular, e-commerce.
For smaller distributors, this makes sense because it doesn’t create inventory that sits on the shelves indefinitely.
But while it works for some business models, it doesn’t work for others. The best counterpoint is the abundance of exclusive e-commerce drops, where brands release a finite amount of product in hopes that it will generate hype among customers whether they get the product or not.
And other promotional campaigns need distributors’ guiding touch and tailor-made product selection for a particular purpose or event.