Fanatics Going To Stock Market Through This Company

Sports merchandise powerhouse Fanatics isn’t finished raising money just yet.

Points

  • Fanatics recently raised $320 million in new funding from investors including Major League Baseball, private equity firm Silver Lake and Fidelity Investments.
  • Investors are attracted to its growth and ability to reach 80 million sports consumers.
  • Fanatics will use the funds to continue expanding its vertical commerce division and explore more mergers and acquisitions.

The company recently raised $320 million in new funding, giving it a valuation of $12.8 billion, up from $6.2 billion last August. According to a person familiar with the company’s planning, Fanatics will use the funds to expand its vertical commerce division, explore additional mergers and acquisitions and expand internationally.

The round was backed by current investors including private equity firm Silver Lake, Fidelity Investments, Franklin Templeton, Neuberger Berman, Thrive Capital and Major League Baseball. Though Fanatics initially said the Series E would be the last funding round, investors came to the company with the offer.

Fanatics backers are attracted to its growth and ability to reach 80 million sports consumers. The firm will use the data collected from customers to leverage other business ventures. Sales for Fanatics global e-commerce operation is up 30% year over year, and it expects to eclipse $3 billion in sales this year.

Last month, the company started its Fanatics China operation, joining investment firm Hillhouse Capital, an Asia-focused private equity fund with companies in Asia’s e-commerce and retail sectors. Fanatics expects its China operation will be worth over $1 billion.

Fanatics used funds from its $350 million raise last August to acquire rival firms, including Minnesota-based WinCraft, which sells home, office and automotive sports-themed merchandise.

The National Football League and MLB invested $150 million in Fanatics in 2017. Both leagues received $100 million equity increases in their holdings in Fanatics in the 2020 raise. Speculation continues to suggest the firm will eventually seek an IPO.

Asked about going public on CNBC’s “Squawk Box”, Fanatics executive chairman Michael Rubin said on Wednesday: “I think going public is an option for us that we talk about a lot but it’s not something we’re focused on today. We’re focused on building a business. But I think we’re well financed and have a lot of growth capital to continue to grow.”

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On Location Experiences is a leader in premium experiential hospitality business, establishing a new industry standard to serve iconic rights holders with extensive experience in ticketing, curated hospitality, live event production and travel management in the worlds of sports and entertainment. On Location is a partner to over 150 rights holders including the NFL, NCAA, the PGA of America and the United States Tennis Association, and provides unrivaled official access for both corporate clients and fans looking for immersive experiences at marquee events including the Super Bowl, Pro Bowl, NFL Draft, NCAA Final Four, PGA of America events, numerous College Football Bowl Games and the Tennis Majors. On Location through CID Entertainment & Future Beat also partner with numerous artists and music festivals across genres, including Imagine Dragons, Metallica, Luke Bryan’s Crash My Playa, Electric Daisy Carnival, Migos, Post Malone, Iron Maiden, and J.Cole. On Location’s operations include: Anthony Travel, CID Entertainment, Future Beat, Kreate Inc, PrimeSport and Steve Furgal’s International Tennis Tours.

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