WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--OneTeam Partners (OneTeam) is proud to announce the hiring of longtime sports licensing executive Malaika Underwood as its new senior vice president of licensing. In her capacity as SVP, Underwood will draw upon her incomparable collegiate athletics business experience to spearhead growth opportunities in the space. She joins OneTeam from The Brandr Group where she worked on the forefront of the college name, image and likeness issue. She also managed partnerships with player associations to develop business on behalf of professional athletes in the college licensing and marketing space.
“This is an exciting time at OneTeam and having an accomplished leader in Malaika join us will certainly push us even further. We are especially excited to welcome Malaika given her pivotal role in developing the business of collegiate NIL,” said Ahmad Nassar, CEO of OneTeam.
Underwood will provide oversight to OneTeam’s growing licensing business and position the company to deliver value to college athletes as the landscape changes. OneTeam launched as a joint venture between the NFL Players Association (NFLPA), Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) and RedBird Capital Partners to maximize the value of athletes’ rights by transforming the way in which they interact with business across group licensing, marketing, media and investing. OneTeam represents a range of commercial business interests on behalf of the NFLPA, MLBPA, Major League Soccer Players Association, U.S. Women’s National Team Players Association, Women’s National Basketball Players Association and U.S. Rugby Players Association.
“I couldn’t be more excited to join OneTeam as we continue building innovative licensing, marketing, media and venture opportunities for all athletes,” said Underwood. “With name, image and likeness rights finally coming to the forefront in college, I look forward to working closely with partners throughout the industry as we help a broad base of college athletes recognize and maximize their value. The experience we have representing groups of athletes at OneTeam is unparalleled and immediately applicable in the college landscape.”
Her career stops also include the Collegiate Licensing Company (CLC) and IMG Licensing, where she curated relationships with key decision makers on college campuses and within the sports industry. While at IMG Licensing, she developed licensing programs with a wide range of clients including ESPN, the X Games, Yamaha Motor, NFL Retired Players and Cumulus Media. At CLC, she managed all licensing activity with partner institutions in the Southeastern Conference, Atlantic Coast Conference and Big East Conference.
Underwood, who played volleyball at the University of North Carolina, is the longest-tenured player on a USA Baseball National Team, male or female, and has earned five Women’s Baseball World Cup medals, as well as two Women’s Baseball World Cup All-Tournament Team selections.
She earned a bachelor's degree in international studies and a master's degree in sports administration from North Carolina.
About OneTeam Partners:
Formed in November 2019, OneTeam Partners is a joint venture between the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA), Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) and RedBird Capital. OneTeam helps athletes maximize the value of their name, image and likeness rights by transforming the way in which athletes interact with businesses across four verticals: group licensing, athlete marketing, media and investing. OneTeam represents a range of commercial business interests on behalf of the NFLPA, MLBPA, Major League Soccer Players Association, United States Women’s National Team Players Association, Women’s National Basketball Players Association, and United States Rugby Players Association.