Original Penguin by Munsingwear, and Grand Slam, Brands Announce Exclusive Apparel Partnership with USA Pickleball


(Miami, FL, May 3, 2021) – Original Penguin by Munsingwear® and Grand Slam®, brands (divisions of Perry Ellis International) have signed an expansive, multi-year partnership with USA Pickleball. The brands will serve as the Official Apparel Partner and exclusive referee program sponsor. The partnership establishes Original Penguin by Munsingwear® and Grand Slam® as industry-leading paddle brands for all genders and ages to one of the fastest growing sports, pickleball. USA Pickleball will launch a new store, https://shopusapickleball.com with exclusive co-branded merchandise.

Pickleball has great appeal with over 4.2 million players in 2020, an increase of 700,000 participants over 2019, despite the pandemic. Pickleball is fun, family oriented, socially distanced and has cross generational appeal. 

At Original Penguin by Munsingwear®, we believe in heritage and unique fashion… it’s what you wear to be original and for the good times. With classic silhouettes and unique prints, the brand will launch a refreshing new apparel line in Fall 2021. 

These brands represent spin offs of the legendary Munsingwear brand®. They epitomize leading sport and leisure apparel distributed worldwide… from bowling to golf & tennis and now pickleball, its legacy continues to maintain authenticity and future relevance. 

“We are ecstatic to be at the forefront of one of the fastest growing sports, and see a tremendous opportunity to expand our footprint in a growing paddle sport industry. The collection will offer functional style and iconic logoed apparel to pickleball players,” stated Oscar Feldenkreis, CEO and President. “Additionally, sponsorship of prominent USA Pickleball tournaments will generate additional brand awareness and exposure through various marketing platforms and activations.” 

“To partner with a premier fashion house such as Perry Ellis International and the Original Penguin by Munsingwear® and Grand Slam® brands for our pickleball community, staff and referees is a great honor. We are excited for this new partnership and the opportunities that lie ahead,” said Stu Upson, USA Pickleball CEO.  “As an organization, we are thrilled to see the exponential growth in the number of players throughout the United States and the opportunity to attract and retain the best referees through this partnership.” 


About Original Penguin by Munsingwear and Grand Slam Brands

The iconic Munsingwear brand is over a century old and was known for many manufacturing firsts from underwear to military supplies. In 1955, Minneapolis-based Munsingwear became the touchstone of suburban sport with the introduction of the first iconic “penguin” knit shirt to America.  Today both Original Penguin by Munsingwear® and the Grand Slam® brands represent  the evolution of the iconic Munsingwear brand and continue to appeal to a new diverse consumer.


About Perry Ellis International

Perry Ellis International, Inc. is a leading designer, distributor, and licensor of a broad line of high quality men’s and women’s apparel, accessories, and fragrances. The company’s collection of dress and casual shirts, golf sportswear, sweaters, dress pants, casual pants and shorts, jeans wear, active wear, dresses, and men’s and women’s swimwear is available through all major levels of retail distribution. The company, through its wholly owned subsidiaries, owns a portfolio of nationally and internationally recognized brands, including: Perry Ellis®, An Original Penguin by Munsingwear®, Laundry by Shelli Segal®, Rafaella®, Cubavera®, Ben Hogan®, Savane®, Grand Slam®, John Henry®, Manhattan®, Axist® and Farah®. The company enhances its roster of brands by licensing trademarks from third parties, including: Nike® for swimwear, and Callaway®, PGA TOUR®, and Jack Nicklaus® for golf apparel.  Additional information on the company is available at www.pery.com


About USA Pickleball

The USA Pickleball Association, a non-profit 501(c)(3) was established in 2005 to further the advancement of the sport on a national level. As the official governing body of pickleball in the United States, USA Pickleball promotes the growth of pickleball by maintaining the rules, setting player ratings, advancing the sport through its national network of 2,000+ ambassadors, and sanctioning tournaments. Since 2013, USA Pickleball has grown 1,000% in its membership to nearly 42,000. More information can be found at usapickleball.org.


For More Information Contact:

Jamie Kuhn, PEI Sports Marketing Manager


(305) 873-1252

Become a Member

Join our fast-growing community

Learning to Play

The basics to get you hooked

Official Rules

Learn the rules and test your knowledge


Get the upper hand at any level


New National Championship Series Announced

Four major tournaments announced leading up to the 2021 Margaritaville USA Pickleball National Championships SURPRISE,…


CNBC’s ‘The News with Shepard Smith’ Reports on the Surge of Pickleball

On Friday, April 16th, CNBC Special Correspondent Jane Wells joined ‘The News with Shepard Smith’…


New 2022 Rulebook Revision Process

The improved 2022 Rulebook Revision process has begun.  We do not expect the 2022 Rulebook…


April Is National Pickleball Month

America’s fastest growing sport celebrates an annual national promotion to bring people of all ages…