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Fanatics and Jakprints Ink Strategic Partnership for US Production

Committing to a Made in America strategy, Fanatics Inc. and Jakprints Inc. have inked a five-year partnership deal that allows Jakprints to support the domestic production needs of Fanatics, a major distributor of licensed sports merchandise.

In conjunction with the agreement, Jakprints has opened a new 140,000-square-foot facility in Eastlake, Ohio, that includes a $7 million investment in state-of-the-art equipment and the creation of more than 100 new jobs. The facility will be Jakprints’ third location, joining facilities in downtown Cleveland, and in Oceanside, Calif.

The new partnership incorporates Jakprints production capabilities that include screen printing, full color transfers, dye sublimation, embroidery and made-to-order digital printing. The aim is to support Fanatics in offering a wide assortment of merchandise across all categories, including a growing direct-to-consumer and wholesale business. Fanatics holds apparel and fan gear licenses with all major sports leagues and hundreds of professional and collegiate partners.

“We continue to build strategic partnerships that drive our integrated domestic embellishment strategy,” said Jim Hardy, senior vice president of supply chain for Fanatics. “This strategy is built on delivering manufacturing agility and speed to market. We are proud to continue partnering with Jakprints to exceed our fan’s expectations on quality and speed.”

Jakprints a full-service print company specializing in short-run direct-to-consumer printing, on-demand-printing and apparel printing, counts Nike, Adidas and Dick’s Sporting Goods, among its clients.

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Jed Seifert, co-owner of Jakprints, said Fanatics has been a valued strategic partner of Jakprints for the past few years.

“The new partnership sets the stage for both companies to capitalize on their rapid expansion plans through mutually beneficial growth strategies including the addition of our new facility in Eastlake, Ohio, as well as our continued investment in print innovations,” Seifert said.

Fanatics has focused on changing the way fans purchase their favorite team apparel and jerseys across retail channels through an innovative, tech-infused approach to making and selling fan gear. With a multichannel commerce approach, Fanatics large assortment can be purchased online, in stores, through mobile commerce, in stadiums or on-site at major the sporting events.

Last week, Fanatics struck a 10-year deal with the University of Oregon, to become the college’s second big merchandise supplier besides Nike. The company plans to produce hundreds of Oregon products and manage the school’s relationship with dozens of other licensees. The deal includes a $1.5 million signing bonus for the school, plus a guarantee of $21.5 million in royalties over the course of the partnership.