Table of Contents
Sports licensing forms a significant portion of overall licensed merchandise market in North America. Sports licensing covers licensing of logos, symbols, names of varied sports organizations and team players. These items are owned by sports institutions which are known as licensors and they lease the rights to use their property to licensees in return of royalty. Licensed sports merchandise is sold through entire range of retail which includes super markets, drug stores, departmental stores, specialty stores and online stores. Merchandising enables efficient engagement with fans who cannot attend matches, thereby helping to monetize sports brands.
The factors driving the market are growing popularity of sports leagues, growing fan base and a global rise in disposable incomes and living standards, especially in developing economies such as Brazil, China, and India that has resulted in increasing demand for sports apparel. Furthermore, licensed sports merchandise is also driven by popularity of college and university level sports team. Key issues of the market include consolidation of power among licensors, declining retail shelf space, high entry barriers and availability of counterfeit products.
The growth in retail sales of licensed sports merchandise was on account of two of its sub segments namely apparel and accessories. The two largest major leagues, NFL and MLB together represented almost half of share in North American sports licensing market. The market expanded in 2013 on the back ongoing expansion of the major US leagues internationally, but also by strong growth for football/ soccer teams globally, as well as for clubs in other sports, such as rugby, cricket, and basketball. Several of the football clubs with the strongest merchandising programs, especially in the UK and Europe, have been expanding around the world, while a large number of clubs in all sports are launching licensing programs or increasing their licensing activities in their home countries.
The report analyzes the development of the licensed sports merchandise market, with a focus on its major market viz. North America. The major trends, growth drivers as well as issues being faced by the industry are being presented in this report. The three major players in the industry - G III Apparel Group Ltd, VF Imagewear, Fanatics Inc., are being profiled, along with their key financials and strategies for growth.
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