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Hat World buys embroidery operator Brand Athletics
May '10
Hat World, Inc, a subsidiary of Genesco Inc, has acquired Brand Athletics, Inc., a team dealer, custom screen printer and embroidery operator based in Tigard, Oregon in the metropolitan Portland area.

Hat World, Inc. is comprised of three businesses – the LIDS retail headwear stores, the LIDS Locker Room specialty fan retail chain, and the LIDS Team Sports wholesale team sports business.

The Brand Athletics acquisition falls within the LIDS Team Sports division and includes the corporate office, distribution center, production assets, and nine-state sales territory of Alaska, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Washington and Wyoming. LIDS Team Sports offers a diverse selection of products including jerseys, warm-ups, fleeces, hats, polo shirts, jackets, equipment, t-shirts, shorts, shoes and other sportswear of a major athletic brand catered to teams and fans. The business targets a broad range of customers including colleges and universities, high schools, bookstores, corporations and youth organizations.

Founded as a niche shopping mall-based retailer of baseball-style caps, Hat World, Inc. expanded into the team dealer wholesale business with the acquisition of Impact Sports in 2008 and Great Plains Sports in 2009. The division was renamed LIDS Team Sports earlier this year.

“The Brand Athletics acquisition further indicates our intent to grow the LIDS brand through the team dealer channel,” said Hat World, Inc. President Kenneth J. Kocher. “We are excited about LIDS Team Sports' addition of the West region of the U.S. to our successful existing national sales force.”

“Like our other strategic acquisitions, the Brand Athletics business model has proven to be successful with considerable growth potential, and we are excited to add the Brand Athletics team to the family of LIDS brands,” said LIDS Team Sports President Clyde Roenbeck. “With sales representation now covering more than half of the U.S., we remain steadfast in our goal to lead the effort of bringing cohesion in the highly fragmented team dealer industry. We will continue to do so by offering the very best products and placing the highest priority on customer service.”

“Brand Athletics is excited to join forces with such an entrepreneurial success story like Hat World, Inc. and be associated with the well-known LIDS brand,” said Matt Geske, Brand Athletics' Operations Director. “We look forward to this next growth phase and to being a part of something very powerful and special in the team dealer business.”

Hat World Inc, subsidiary of Genesco Inc

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