Fanatics’ meteoric ascension continues after a new funding round more than doubled its valuation.
The privately held online sports merchandise retailer raised $320 million in new funding, bringing its valuation to $12.8 billion, a significant jump from its $6.2 billion valuation in August, per CNBC.
The latest round included current investors like Major League Baseball, Fidelity, and Silver Lake Partners. Fanatics will use the funds to expand its vertical commerce division and international footprint, as well as consider additional mergers and acquisitions, per sources close to the deal.
The company has separated itself from the rest of the pack through its exclusive deals with sports leagues and teams, making it an attractive business venture for investors. Fanatics expects to reach $3 billion in sales this year, while its e-commerce operation is already up 30% year-over-year.
The growth has been fueled by the company’s recent acquisition of former competitor WinCraft, and the launch of Fanatics China, a joint business venture with private equity firm Hillhouse Capital that will bring merchandise to the sports-loving country of 1.4 billion.
WinCraft generates more than $100 million annually, while Fanatics China is expected to be worth more than $1 billion.
Earlier this month, Fanatics appointed five-time NBA champion and business mogul Earvin “Magic” Johnson to its board of directors.