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Under Armour Inc.
Public (NYSE:UA)
Founded 1996
Headquarters Baltimore, Maryland
Products Clothing & Accessories
Revenue Increase$606.6 million USD (2007)
Increase$52.6 million USD (2007)
Number of employees
979 (2006)

Under Armour NYSEUA is a publicly traded American manufacturer of sports-oriented clothing and equipment based in Baltimore, Maryland. Founded in 1996, Under Armour is best known for setting the industry standard for form-fitting, moisture-wicking performance apparel[1] and has since expanded to a full sportswear and equipment line. Under Armour also aired its first Super Bowl ad during Super Bowl XLII, promoting its foray into the athletic shoe market currently scheduled for May 2008.



Under Armour was founded by Kevin Planck, who first conceptualized the clothing line as a walk-on fullback at the University of Maryland, College Park. Planck's initial idea was to create a workout T-shirt that, unlike a typical cotton T-shirt, would not become heavy with the weight of sweat. He also approached the business with a strong marketing plan in mind; he sent out free samples to successful college and professional athletes he knew personally, such as Eddie George and Jermaine Lewis, to gain brand exposure.[2] Planck launched the business from his grandmother's townhouse, accruing nearly $40,000 in credit card debt to do so. His first sale was to the Georgia Tech football team in 1996.

It was originally created to be worn underneath uniforms (like baseball or basketball jerseys) or pads (like football, hockey or lacrosse shoulder pads), but now also manufactures clothes such as hooded sweatshirts, regular t-shirts, sweat pants, compression shorts, etc. Under Armour led the trend of form-fitting, moisture-wicking performance apparel which was soon imitated by Nike, with their Dri-FIT Pro line, and by Reebok, with their NFL Equipment line.[3] In June of 2006, Under Armour released a brand of football cleats using the slogan "Click-Clack." Many soldiers currently serving in Iraq and Afghanistan wear Under Armour or similar moisture-wicking clothing to relieve some heat from the hot climate. Recently parts of the U.S. Military and other NATO forces have banned Under Armour because polyester fuses to the skin when exposed to flame or very intense heat resulting in worse burns.[4] In 2008 Under Armour aired its first ever Super Bowl ad. Under Armour is also releasing it's very first all-sport tennis shoe in May 2008. The prototypes can be seen at [1]

Retail operations[edit]

In late 2007, Under Armour opened its first retail location at the Westfield Annapolis mall in Annapolis, Maryland. In May 2008, Under Armour will open a larger 6,000 square feet store at Westfield Fox Valley in Aurora, Illinois. The stores are designed to look like the underbelly of a sports stadium with concrete facade, tunnel entrance and a ramp that goes up into the store. Under Armour plans to open several other stores in 2008.


Athletic Teams[edit]

On February 15, 2008, Under Armour announced it will become the official kit sponsor of German Bundesliga team Hannover 96 beginning with the 2008-09 season, Under Armour's first kit sponsorship for a professional soccer team.[5] Under Armor also announced that they would sponsor the Welsh Rugby team's shirts starting next season.

Under Armour is the official outfitter for the football programs at the University of Maryland, Auburn University, the University of South Carolina, Texas Tech University, and the University of Hawaii.[6]


Meissner wearing Under Armour warmup gear


  1. ^ Terry, Robert J. (2005-09-23). "Analysts: Brand crossover risky for Under Armour". Baltimore Business Journal.  External link in |newspaper= (help)
  2. ^ Hyman, Mark (2003-12-01), "How I Did It: Kevin Plank", Magazine  External link in |magazine= (help)
  3. ^ Baltimore Business Journal Analysts: Brand crossover risky for Under Armour "Under Armour's shirts, shorts and accessories are made with moisture-wicking fabrics that pull sweat away from the body. They've become the industry standard even as Nike, Reebok and other companies have tried desperately to overtake Under Armour as the..."
  4. ^ Holt, Stephen (April 10, 2006). "Marines Ban Polyester Clothing In Iraq". Marine Corps News. Retrieved 2007-11-30.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  5. ^ "Under Armour(R) is New Official Kit Supplier for Hannover 96". press release. 2008-02-15. Retrieved 2008-02-19.  External link in |publisher= (help)
  6. ^ "Under Armour says 'Aloha' to University of Hawaii". press release. Baltimore Business Journal at 2008-02-25. Retrieved 2008-03-02.  External link in |publisher= (help)

External links[edit]

Category:Sportswear brands