The Jets have been awarded the international marketing rights to the United Kingdom as part of the NFL's International Home Marketing Area ("IHMA") initiative. The initiative permitted all-32 NFL clubs the opportunity to bid on select international markets, with the objective to grow American football globally.
As part of the NFL's IHMA program, the New York Jets will have a "second home" in which they will initiate new fan engagement platforms, such as live events, sponsor activations, content creation and distribution, and partnerships with UK brands, businesses, teams, and athletes. The Jets will also introduce several new community initiatives, including the expansion of NFL Flag Football throughout the United Kingdom.
Coupled with the League's commitment to International Games – all 32 clubs will play at least one international game in the next eight seasons – the League will use its best efforts to ensure the Jets play their international games in the UK.
"We are thrilled to have been awarded the United Kingdom bid as the Jets continue to expand our global footprint," said Robert Wood Johnson IV, Chair of the New York Jets. "As a country with a deep and rich culture of sporting greatness, the United Kingdom has been our clear top choice throughout this process. After seeing the passion, not only for the NFL, but for the Jets during my time there as Ambassador, I knew this would be a wonderful opportunity for our organization to strengthen our roots in the UK and connect with even more new fans. Afterall, New York and London are sister cities."
In October, the Jets launched their first-ever UK-focused social channel, @NYJetsinUK. As part of the NFL IHMA program, the team will look to expand its existing social and digital presence throughout the UK. The team will also secure a content partner to bring UK fans Jets programming, such as their Emmy award-winning content series, One Jets Drive. As in the US, the team will provide UK fans with unique and exclusive access to the team with original and shoulder programming throughout the year.
"International marketing clearly represents an enormous growth opportunity for both the NFL and Jets. We are excited to showcase our players and coaches and their personalities in the United Kingdom," said Hymie Elhai, President of the New York Jets. "Through grassroots programs, unique in-market activations, and strategic partnerships, we are excited to build upon our fanbase in the UK and look forward to establishing longstanding relationships."
Fans will also have the opportunity to join an international membership program that will provide UK-based fans unique benefits. Potential examples include preferential access to New York Jets events in the UK (e.g., official watch parties), UK-specific merchandise, an NFL Game Pass subscription, and member-exclusive giveaways – including trips to see the team play at MetLife Stadium.
To help deepen the Jets presence in the UK, New York Jets Legend Nick Mangold will serve as the team's ambassador. Mangold not only played for the team during its first trip to London in 2015, but also accompanied them during their most recent trip this past October. In this role, Nick will be part of in-market activations and fan events, in addition to current players and other Jets Legends and personalities.
The Jets have teamed up with SPORTFIVE to be the team's in-market partner agency. With offices in London and Manchester, SPORTFIVE has a strong market presence and a proven track record of successfully managing and executing comparable international development and commercial projects for some of the world's most renowned sports rights-holders. SPORTFIVE will support the New York Jets' efforts in the United Kingdom with social and digital media, marketing and events, and strategic partnerships.
Click here for more about the Jets In the UK on the official website of the new program.