ST. PAUL, Minn. (FOX 9) - UNRL, a company founded and based in Minnesota, has been releasing limited edition, official Minnesota Vikings apparel for every home game this season. The company makes only a small batch of these exclusive sweatshirts and have sold out of every edition.
The reason this partnership is so unique is because, up until a few years ago, only a few large, select companies had licenses to sell items with official NFL logos. Recently, the NFL changed their licensing restrictions, allowing teams like the Vikings to choose other apparel companies to work with. The Vikings decided to keep it local and partner with UNRL.
"Up until two years ago, a smaller company like UNRL would have never been able to do this. NFL licensed merchandise, that's been really just owned by the big players in the industry. And so when that door opened, it was a window that we wanted to capitalize on for sure and really come out with something special. And I think we've really done that," CEO and founder of UNRL, Michael Jordan, said.
Representatives for the Vikings say their decision to work with someone local was intentional.
"There's such a built up demand now because they are a true partnership of the Minnesota Vikings, and our brands are totally connected together where you wouldn't see that with a company that's not based locally in Minnesota," Manager of Partner Experience for the Minnesota Vikings, Jordan Ramsey, said.
UNRL released an "Encore" edition of their hometown hoodie series in honor of the Vikings making a run in the playoffs. Their CEO says it’s been a huge opportunity for a relatively small, local company.
"This partnership with the NFL, partnership with the Vikings, is really attributed, in a big way, to the momentum that we've gained. And, you know, we're really starting to come into our stride and get some traction in the last couple of years," Jordan said.