American sportswear brand Reebok, which is banking on fitness conscious customers, now plans to bring the world's largest mixed martial arts league UFC to India. The company, owned by German sports goods maker Adidas, is now putting in efforts to bounce back after controversy surrounding alleged fraud at the India operations. It is also working on changing its mass brand image by associating itself with global franchisees such as ‘Cross fit.

Apart from launching fan wear merchandise and UFC kits, featuring high-performance gear worn by athletes, Reebok will also open new stores called 'Fight Shops'. These stores will retail UFC products and house MMA (mixed martial arts) trainers, who will guide consumers to enroll for classes. Globally, UFC and Reebok recently partnered to launch UFC Fight Kit. Three million fans out of 10 million UFC fans on Facebook are Indians, so the brand will push its marketing efforts by partnering with Sony Kix, a sports channel launched earlier this year.

Adidas, which acquired the US-based Reebok in 2006, expects the brand re-emerge from shadows of the 2012 controversy surrounding alleged fraud by Reebok India’s then managing director Subhinder Singh Prem. Dave Thomas, Managing Director of Adidas India is bullish about Reebok’s prospects in the country and feels that further investments into the brand will push its growth momentum. Reebok has around 300 stores in India, of which, 40 are ‘Reebok Fit Hub’ stores that sell premium products and provide fitness consultation to customers.

 

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