Retail Merchandiser - November/December 2012 - (Page 12)

COVER STORY Dream T eam The National Basketball Association (NBA) has always held a lot of international appeal – one of the league’s charter teams was the Toronto Huskies – but the league’s global profile has never been larger than it is right now. Thanks in part to hosting some of the greatest international players in history, the NBA has become the premier professional basketball league not only in North America, but throughout the world. The league broadcasts games in more than 200 countries and territories in 47 languages, and has offices in cities including Hong Kong, Mumbai, London, Madrid and Rio de Janeiro. 12 November/December 2012 The National Basketball Association has created a solid team of licensees to help expand its brand at home and around the world. With this kind of global penetration, the NBA enjoys licensing opportunities greater than any of the major North American sports leagues. Senior Vice President of Licensing and Business Affairs Vicky Picca says this is thanks in large part to how relatively easy it is for people anywhere in the world to pick up a ball and imagine themselves as Kobe Bryant or Kevin Durant. “I think the success comes down to accessibility, at the end of the day,” she says. “All you need is a ball to play.” That accessibility has translated into a robust portfolio of high-end licensees around the globe. Picca says the NBA’s current merchandising business consists of more than 300 licensees producing and promoting products sold in more than 100,000 stores in more than 100 countries on six continents. Despite a global footprint that is the envy of most other sports leagues, the NBA is not finished yet. Picca says the league’s embrace of social media and digital technology, combined with the makeup of its fan base and high-quality licensees, will carry the league to even greater success in the years to come. In every respect, the NBA’s licensing and merchandising efforts have serious Hall of Fame credentials. Global Game Perhaps the most telling sign of the NBA’s global profile is the league’s recent focus on establishing e-commerce sites in certain international markets. More than half of the traffic to comes from outside the United States, Picca says, and the league is answering the call for more market-specific merchandising through new websites. For example, China is the NBA’s second-largest market for merchandise, next to the United States. NBA-branded merchandise is sold at more than 30,000 locations throughout China. These include the NBA Home Store operated by Baofeng and focused on non-apparel items, and the NBA corner of Shanghai’s Top Sports II store. The NBA Store operated by Fengbo Photos Courtesy: NBAE/Getty Images

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Retail Merchandiser - November/December 2012

Retail Merchandiser - November/December 2012
Sports Licensing Show
Wine & Food Festival
Brand Licensing Europe
Category Insight
Cover Story
Affinity Consultants
United States Olympic Committee
Pacific Cycle Inc.
Foot Locker Inc.
Nationwide Vision
Belle Foods
Campioni Enterprises
Gilligan Oil
Hickman’s Iga
Liquor Stores N.A.
Ken’s Superfair Foods and Food Fair
Navy Exchange Service Command
New & Notable

Retail Merchandiser - November/December 2012