The Yomiuri Giants, Nike and Fanatics have announced a comprehensive new long-term global partnership, adopting an innovative licensed sports merchandise model that will enhance the fan experience for the most successful Japanese baseball team in history.
The new exclusive partnership between the three organizations will see Nike become the official uniform supplier of the Yomiuri Giants. Fanatics will manufacture and distribute on-field uniforms and player performance items as well as additional Nike-branded fan jerseys and apparel that are sold both online and at physical retail locations. Fanatics will also tap its leading memorabilia division to create and offer unique autograph and collectible products for fans to celebrate the team and players.
The Yomiuri Giants will become the first individual club in global sport to adopt the model, already fully operationalized and proven successful for all parties in similar partnerships between Nike and Fanatics with major professional leagues and Universities in the USA.
The long-term partnership will see Fanatics exclusively operate the e-commerce and physical retail business for the Yomiuri Giants, with Fanatics launching a new online store at the end of January and refurbishing the retail stores at the Tokyo Dome, ready for the start of the NPB 2023 season.
Fanatics will also become the master licensee for the Yomiuri Giants merchandise portfolio, with the club taking advantage of Fanatics’ innovative vertical commerce manufacturing model. Vertical commerce will enhance both assortment and speed-to-market of Yomiuri Giants merchandise by using technology, data, on-demand manufacturing, and an agile supply chain to create the most responsive collections of real-time, high-quality merchandise for Yomiuri Giants fans.
Tsukasa Imamura, Representative Director and President of YOMIURI GIANTS, said: “It is a great honor and pleasure to partner with Fanatics, the global leader in licensed sports merchandise. We can imagine the joy on our fans’ faces brought by the innovative business model, which includes manufacturers, logistics, e-commerce, and retailers using cutting-edge technology. By combining Fanatics’ fan-centric philosophy of “Everything exists for the fans” with the history and tradition of Yomiuri Giants, celebrating 89 years since the team’s founding, we are confident that we can provide one of the best fan experiences in the world. Please look forward to this innovative partnership between Yomiuri Giants, Nike, and Fanatics, the first of its kind in the world for an individual club.”
Fanatics partners with more than 900 of the world’s leading sports organisations, clubs and leagues such as MLB, NFL, NBA, Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain.
Doug Mack, Vice Chairman of Fanatics Inc. and CEO of Fanatics Commerce, said: “The Yomiuri Giants are the most successful Japanese baseball team in history and has one of the strongest fan bases across Asia in any sport. It is an honor to work with such a historic organization and for them to become the largest individual club in any sport globally to adopt what we believe is the most innovative and fan centric model in the licensed sports merchandise industry. For a club as prestigious as the Yomiuri Giants to put its faith in Fanatics is testament to the success of this game changing model we have built with Nike and to our focus on always putting the fan first.
Masanori Kawana, Managing Director of Fanatics in East Asia, said: “Since we began our journey in Asia five years ago, we focused on creating value for the fans with a strong belief that our global vertical business model would benefit them and work across Asia. Collaborating with the Giants has been an ambition for me personally and I am thrilled to announce this global partnership. This innovative model, which has proven to be successful with some of the biggest US professional leagues and Universities, will be a complete gamechanger for the Asian Sports industry and will benefit Yomiuri Giants fans with a larger selection of high-quality merchandise available wherever they are and whenever they want it.”