Fanatics Valued at $27 Billion in Latest Funding Round

Fanatics has raised $1.5 billion from a series of new and existing investors in a round that values the rapidly expanding company at $27 billion, according to someone familiar with the deal.

New investors include Michael Dell’s MSD Capital, investment manager BlackRock and financial services giant Fidelity, according to the person, who was granted anonymity because the details are private.

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A representative for Fanatics, which is owned by billionaire Michael Rubin, declined to comment.

That $27 billion valuation, which is up from $6.2 billion in August 2020, encapsulates the core merchandise business, plus about 50% of Lids and a series of new business ventures. They include majority positions in a new trading card company (recently valued at $10.4 billion), NFT platform Candy (recently valued at $1.5 billion), and a sports betting business that is yet to fully form.

Expansion into new verticals has been accompanied by some big-name hires. Fanatics recently brought on Los Angeles Dodgers executive Tucker Kain to oversee growth beyond apparel. Former FanDuel CEO Matt King is running the sports betting venture, and former IAC CFO Glenn Schiffman is the new CFO of the full Fanatics company. The company is expecting to do about $5 billion in sales in 2022.

This is the largest funding round in Fanatics history. Prior investors include SoftBank, Silver Lake, Roc Nation, rapper Jay-Z and Todd Boehly’s Eldridge Capital.

Rubin has long planned to eventually take Fanatics public, though the rapid expansion of the business has potentially slowed the timeframe for that move. It’s unclear if that would eventually happen via IPO or potential acquisition via SPAC.

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