Atlanta, GA

Atlanta Rapper Lil Baby, Jay-Z & Charli D'Amelio Buy Mitchell & Ness For $250 Million

Carla St. Louis
Atlanta rapper Lil Baby.Lil Baby's website

Atlanta rapper Lil Baby along with Jay-Z, Meek Mill, and Michael Rubin are part of a long list of investors who bought Mitchell & Ness.

The other investors included Maverick Carter (LeBron Jame's longtime business partner) and TikTok influencer, Charli D'Amelio & her family (Dixie, Marc, and Heidi).

The group paid $250 million for the acquisition from Juggernaut Capital Partners, according to The New York Times. According to Ebony, Fanatics is the majority stakeholder. The term of the deal says Fanatics owns 75 percent with 25 percent bought collectively by Jay-Z, Meek Mill, Maverick Carter, Lil Baby, and other investors.

Mitchell & Ness is a company that specializes in making exact replicas of professional sports jerseys and apparel.

Rubin, the CEO of Fanatics and partner of the Philadelphia 76ers, minted the deal through his company.

Based on the announcement, he has major plans for the cult brand. “I’m incredibly excited for Fanatics to partner with this incredible group of innovative owners to build upon the company’s already strong business that has kept the brand culturally relevant for more than 100 years,” says Rubin. “Growing up as a kid in Philadelphia, we looked at Mitchell & Ness as a badge of pride, and I truly believe this legendary brand has no limit.”

Fanatics plans to grow the business by helping Mitchell & Ness leverage its customer database and strong relationships with sports properties. The deal includes tapping into brand awareness, expanding the portfolio, and adding new league, team, college, and entertainment rights. The new owners also plan to expand the distribution of Mitchell & Ness products to new retailers globally.

According to Complex, Mitchell & Ness will remain the same in terms of it's employees. Rubin says Mitchell & Ness will continue to run as a separate entity within the larger Fanatics Commerce framework. Kevin Wulff, the CEO of Mitchell & Ness, will remain in his current role while reporting to Joe Bozich, president of Fanatics Brands.

The streetwear purchase fits nicely in Fanatics portfolio that includes clothing and accessories related to sports such as Majestic jerseys and Top of the World hats.

Founded in 1904, Mitchell & Ness is notable for it's nostalgic sports memorabilia--specifically, vintage (also known as throwback) jerseys which sell from $100 to $400. The sports merchandiser has always had a love affair with hip-hop culture, with rappers such as Fabolous, Jadakiss, and Jay-Z famously wearing its jerseys in their music videos.

“Fashion is cyclical, but classics are forever," Jay-Z says. "Mitchell & Ness is a true classic. I was an early adopter of this brand, as well as a part of a departure from athletic wear. I’m proud to play a small role in bringing it back, and in some cases, introducing the authenticity and quality of the Mitchell & Ness brand to a new generation,” he says.

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