Realizing the incredible opportunity to leverage the exposure from Any Given Sunday, Plank bet big and bought his first print ad in ESPN the Magazine.
A risk at the time, the move paid off, generating awareness and a 0,000 increase in sales.
For the first time since starting Under Armour, Plank officially put himself on the payroll.
Back in his playing days, Plank hated having to change his sweat-soaked cotton T-shirts over and over again during two-a-days.
Knowing that there simply had to be something better, he set out to create a solution.
Plank named his new company Under Armour, and after extensive research on the athletic benefits of synthetic fabrics, he designed the first Under Armour Heat Gear® T-shirt, which he named the #0037.
Engineered with moisture-wicking performance fibers, the shirt helps keep athletes cool, dry, and light in the most brutally hot conditions.
Working from his grandmother's basement in Washington DC's Georgetown neighborhood, he traveled up and down the East Coast selling his revolutionary new product out of the trunk of his car.
By the end of 1996, Plank made his first team sale, and Under Armour generated ,000 in sales.
In 1997, Under Armour introduced the now-famous Cold Gear® fabric, which keeps athletes warm, dry, and light in cold conditions, and then the All Season Gear® line, which keeps athletes comfortable between the extremes.
By the end of 1998, Under Armour outgrew grandma's basement and moved to an all-new headquarters and warehouse in Baltimore.
In 1999, Under Armour played a supporting role in one of the year's most-talked about movies.