Fanatics sign first deal in Asia with Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks

Fanatics has signed a merchandising deal with the 2017 NPB Japan Series Champion Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks.

The 10-year deal is the first for the fast-fashion brand in Asia and will see Fanatics operate an omnichannel retail experience for fans of the Hawks and tailor merchandise to results on the field and the actions of the team.

Fanatics operates a vertical retail model which aims to match e-commerce operations with an agile supply chain and on-demand manufacturing to create a responsive range of merchandise for fans.

Under the new deal, the company will operate e-commerce and mobile platforms for the team, as well as the team stores inside the Hawks’ Fukuoka Dome home. In addition to fan gear and apparel, Fanatics will also design, manufacture and deliver the on-field jerseys for players and replica jerseys for fans.

Fanatics has been expanding its made-to-order infrastructure in Asia to better serve existing rights-holder clients like the NBA and Real Madrid in the region, but also win new business with Asian rights-holders.

Masanori Kawana, managing director of Fanatics Japan, said: “We are very happy to have the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks as our first official partner in Asia, utilizing Fanatics’ full set of vertical manufacturing capabilities.

“We believe we can provide unrivalled experience to Hawks’ fans, fully leveraging Fanatics’ expertise and technology in production, logistics, e-commerce and retail.”