Authentic Brands Group, which owns Reebok, Hunter and the collapsed Ted Baker, has added another iconic brand to its portfolio.


Authentic Brands Group has bought sportswear brand Champion

The group announced the acquisition of sportswear brand Champion in a $1.2bn (£940m) deal.

Authentic snapped up the brand from former owner HanesBrands and said the move “demonstrates its commitment” to expanding its portfolio of iconic sports, lifestyle and entertainment brands.

HanesBrands said there is potential to value the transaction at a further $300m (£234.5m) depending on performance.

Authentic said the deal will boost its annual retail sales to more than $32bn (£25bn) across the world.

The retail group added that Champion has played “a pivotal role” in shaping the athleisure space over its history, with its ‘C’ logo now recognised internationally.

Authentic has plans to leverage its “diverse and multifaceted platform of consumer verticals” as well as its brand-building expertise to help convert the Champion business into a licensed model.

It added that discussions are being held with existing and potential operators in “key regions” to manage its various business operations and maintain its global footprint.

Authentic chief executive and chair Jamie Salter said: “We are excited to acquire Champion, a brand that shares our pioneering spirit.

“Over the last few years, the addition of new brands together with the expansion of live events has grown Authentic into a world-leading sports and entertainment licensing company. Bringing Champion into the fold further expands our position in this space.”

Authentic chief brand officer and president Nick Woodhouse added: “Our successful efforts igniting Reebok’s momentum in sports have created a playbook to achieve a similar feat with Champion.

“With expansive reach, differentiated channel strategy and a balanced strength across its women’s and men’s businesses, Champion has profoundly influenced sports culture.

“This is the perfect time for the brand to make a significant impact as women’s sports continue to broaden their presence and fandom worldwide.”

Authentic said in a statement: “The acquisition of Champion is subject to certain standard closing conditions, including regulatory approval, and is expected to be finalised in the second half of 2024.”

JP Morgan and BofA Securities are understood to be acting as financial advisers, while Latham & Watkins has been drafted in as a legal adviser to Authentic.