After watching what was a great Saturday night of free fights, I decided to enjoy them a second time. While they were even better the second time, one thing stood out that I missed the first time: Fungus Killer.
What am I referring to? I'm speaking of the giant Fungus Killer logo that was across Lyoto Machida's crotch. It's prominent throughout the fight but what stood out was when he jumped on the cage; it was like a billboard for Tineacide Fungus Killer. That company got its money's worth, which brings me to the purpose of this article: Is there a negative to the UFC broadening its brand and sponsors?
Just a few years ago it seemed like every other fighter was sponsored by either Condom Depot or Full Tilt Poker (in fact, that was a popular drinking game on my campus). Since then UFC implemented a sponsorship tax to help weed out "fly by night" companies and encourage others to make a real, fully-funded commitment to UFC sponsorship. This has been seen as a negative by some but in truth, it elevates the level of sponsors the UFC and its fighters get because they aren't going to be associated with smaller companies.
Now with the UFC's profile expanding we are starting to see companies like Tineacide get into the fight sponsorship business. I fully expect that we will see more and more non-MMA-related companies entering into the MMA market to advertise. Very few avenues can hit the key 18-34 age demographic quite like the UFC can.
Fans will, for better or worse, be seeing more and more new types of products across fighters shorts and backsides in the very near future.
Who knows? Maybe Condom Depot was a trendsetter after all.