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Fanatics, the Online Sports Retailer, Lands Nascar Deal to Run Superstores at Racetracks

The company is building brand awareness by complementing its e-commerce business with physical stores.

Action Sports Photography/Shutterstock

Fanatics, the online seller of licensed sports apparel, is taking a big plunge into the offline retail world. The privately-held company has landed a 10-year deal to operate giant superstores on site at all 38 Nascar Sprint Cup Series race weekends.

Over the course of the year, Nascar will phase out the current retail setup at races, where teams and drivers sell merchandise out of their own “haulers” or trucks. In their place, Fanatics will erect massive temperature-controlled tents from which it will hawk driver and team goods.

The deal underscores the company’s increasing focus on building brand awareness by complementing its e-commerce business with physical Fanatics stores at certain sporting venues. The company already operates team stores for the NHL’s New Jersey Devils and Phoenix Coyotes as well as the University of Texas and Louisiana State University.

Fanatics will continue to operate Nascar’s online store as well.

Fanatics’ core business focuses on operating the online stores for all the American major sports leagues as well as more than 150 professional and college teams. It also sells team and player apparel at its main website, Fanatics.com, as well as on a network of other sporting sites.

Fanatics hired former One Kings Lane CEO Doug Mack as its chief executive in April. Since then, Mack has overhauled the company’s executive team to help raise awareness for its brand and improve its technical chops.

This article originally appeared on Recode.net.