The Phoenix Suns NBA basketball team has signed a long-term partnership with licensed sports merchandising company Fanatics to create an elevated shopping experience for fans.
The agreement will see Fanatics operate all physical retail experiences at Phoenix Suns Arena for all events held at the venue. Fanatics will also operate online and mobile commerce for the Suns.
Fanatics will begin operation of all in-venue retail locations throughout the arena from this summer. Its remit will cover new expansive team stores, kiosks and additional concourse shops following the recent $230m (£164m/€190m) transformation of the arena.
Shops.suns.com will serve as the team’s new e-commerce and mobile platform and is currently live. The platform is fueled by Fanatics’ cloud commerce platform and will offer a wide range of team merchandise, more than doubling the previous product offering across all categories and genders.
The Suns said the blending of online and in-venue retail executions will allow the Suns and the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury to use Fanatics’ network with data and analytics to accomplish partnership goals. Fanatics will work closely with the teams to deploy merchandising strategies, including the creation of local products, that capitalise on trends and styles that are unique to Phoenix and the teams’ fan bases.
Fanatics will also support the Suns’ agreement with PayPal, the official payment partner of the team, by accepting PayPal across online and in-venue retail locations.
Ed O’Brien, Fanatics’ senior vice-president of business development and strategy, said: “The Phoenix Suns are one of the hottest young teams in the NBA, and their fans deserve a best-in-class shopping experience which allows them to showcase their pride when passion is highest, especially during this thrilling playoff run.
“Through this deal, Suns and Mercury fans will now have access to a significantly expanded, high-quality product selection on gameday and beyond. We’re really excited about the collaborative approach and the future innovations that we’ll create together.”
Fanatics is the official e-commerce partner of the NBA and the WNBA, with the Suns to become the company’s 13th NBA e-commerce partner and sixth NBA omnichannel partner. Fanatics operates the NBA’s flagship store in New York City.
Image: Christy Radecic