Jay-Z and Lil Baby have teamed up with Fanatics as well as entrepreneur Maverick Carter to purchase Mitchell & Ness, makers of throwback jerseys and retro sports apparel.
According to multiple reports, the group paid $250 million for the company, with Fanatics owing 75%. The remaining investors, which also includes rapper Meek Mill and the TikTok-famous D’Amelio family collectively own 25%.
“I’m incredibly excited for Fanatics to partner with this incredible group of innovative owners to build upon the company’s already strong business,” Fanatics CEO Michael Rubin said about the deal in a statement. “Growing up as a kid in Philadelphia we looked at Mitchell & Ness as a badge of pride, and I truly believe this legendary brand has no limit.”
In a statement, Jay-Z shared his love for the brand, and says he’s excited to introduce it to the new generation.
“Fashion is cyclical, but classics are forever,” Jay-Z said. “Mitchell & Ness is a true classic. I was an early adopter of this brand, as well as a part of a departure from athletic wear. I’m proud to play a small role in bringing it back, and in some cases, introducing the authenticity and quality of the Mitchell & Ness brand to a new generation.”
Meek Mill’s involvement shouldn’t be all that surprising. The Philadelphia native and Michael Rubin have been friendly for years, and are co-chairs in the Reform Alliance program, which advocates for changes to the criminal justice system. In wake of the announcement, Meek took to his Instagram page to share his excitement.
“I used to want a throwback sooooooooo bad!!!!! Now we owning ‘MITCHELL AND NESS’ I need a baseball jacket asappppppp!!!! The whole hood seeing me step by step become a BOSS STEP BY STEP!”
Mitchell and Ness was previously owned by Juggernaut Capital Partners, who bought it from Adidas in 2016 for a reported $50 million. The iconic company reportedly had $350 million in revenue last year, with $70 million in profit
Despite the new takeover by Fanatics, Mitchell & Ness will operate as a separate, distinct brand within the Fanatics commerce division. Mitchell & Ness CEO Kevin Wulff will stay on as CEO, reporting directly to Fanatics Brands president Joe Bozich.
All 132 Mitchel & Ness employees will also remain with the company.