The National Basketball Association (NBA) and Fanatics, a global leader in licensed sports merchandise, has opened the first NBA Store in the UK, on London’s well-known pedestrian shopping area Carnaby, Soho.
The new two-floor store, located at 14-16 Foubert’s Place in London, is being operated by retail giant Lids, the largest licensed sports retailer in North America partly owned by Fanatics and aims to offer fans an authentic NBA shopping experience.
The London opening marks the first official NBA store operated by Lids as part of the NBA’s partnership with Fanatics and will be followed up with three additional stores around the world within the next 18 months.
The new store houses an extensive range of official NBA and WNBA merchandise and memorabilia, including exclusive NBA products, apparel, jerseys, headwear, sporting goods, toys and collectables from major brands such as Mitchell and Ness, New Era, Nike and Wilson.
In addition, there is a customisation service where fans can personalise NBA jerseys and hats for all teams.
NBA EME director, global partnerships, Steve Griffiths, said in a statement: “Ahead of our 75th anniversary season, we are excited to welcome fans to the first NBA Store in the UK.
“UK fans are true connoisseurs of the game, and through our partnership with Fanatics, fans of all ages will be able to celebrate their love of the NBA with an extensive range of official and exclusive merchandise.”
The National Basketball Association strengthens ties with the UK with debut store in London
General manager of Fanatics’ international business, Zohar Ravid, added: “The NBA is becoming increasingly popular in the UK, and we have seen some really strong growth across our online sites, with UK sales on NBAStore.eu growing significantly in the last five years.
“Opening the first-ever physical NBA retail store in London, combining our vertical product and e-commerce strengths with Lids’ high street execution, is a logical step and clearly within Fanatics’ strategy of expanding teams’ and leagues’ omnichannel presence so fans globally are served in the best way.”
The NBA league also has official stores in Brazil, China, Italy, Mexico and Qatar, in addition to the flagship NBA Store in the US in New York City and 400 NBA-branded retail stores and attractions worldwide. NBA fans in the UK and across Europe can also shop online at NBAStore.eu for a wide range of NBA products featuring all 30 NBA teams.
As a leader in licensed sports merchandise, Fanatics is changing the way fans purchase their favourite team apparel, jerseys, headwear and hard goods through a tech-infused approach to making and selling fan gear in today’s on-demand, mobile-first culture.
Indianapolis-based Lids Sports Group has more than 1,200 retail locations across the US, Canada, and Puerto Rico.