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NFL develops H&M apparel range in deal brokered by IMG

The National Football League has announced a partnership with fashion retailer H&M to launch a range of NFL-branded apparel and accessories in a deal brokered by IMG.

The NFL-branded men’s, women’s and children’s products will be sold in more than 20 countries, excluding the US but including the UK, China, Japan, Columbia, Germany, India, Mexico, South Korea and the Middle East. A range of men’s jackets, tops and loungewear is already available in stores and online with women’s, children’s and accessories lines to follow next season.

IMG became the NFL’s exclusive licensing representative across select markets in Europe and Asia in 2017 with a remit to expand the league’s international presence through new licensed goods aimed at overseas fans. Other sports rights-holders to be represented by the agency include Euro 2020, the Bundesliga World Rugby and Royal Ascot.

The H&M range of apparel and accessories will aim to tap into demand generated by regular-season games in London and Mexico and the popularity of the Super Bowl, which is watched in 180 countries and broadcast in nearly 25 different languages.

The NFL was the second-highest ranked sports rights-holder in License Global’s annual survey of the world biggest licensors last year having registered a reported $3.3bn in retail sales in 2018. Major League Baseball ranked first, having generated a reported $5.5bn in retail sales.

“By partnering with H&M, we are able to reach fans in markets across the world with a diverse selection of apparel and accessories for men, women and children,” said Akash Jain, NFL vice-president of international commercial development.

“NFL fanbases are growing throughout countries in every corner of the world and we want to continually meet our fans needs for fashionable apparel and fuel their fandom for years to come.”

Matthew Primack, senior vice-president, worldwide licensing at IMG, added: “We are delighted to be bringing one of the most popular sports leagues together with one of the world’s favourite fast fashion retailers. The NFL’s international appeal as a lifestyle and fashion brand continues to grow rapidly. With its reputation for creative collaborations and thousands of stores around the world, H&M is the perfect partner to provide an accessible and stylish collection of NFL apparel and accessories that will be sought after by football fans and fashionistas.”

The first collection is available now in H&M stores and online, with apparel prices ranging from $14.99 to $29.99.

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