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News > Companies
Reebok nets NBA
August 1, 2001: 3:29 p.m. ET

Company gets exclusive apparel right for NBA, WNBA, development league
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NEW YORK (CNNfn) - Reebok International Ltd. agreed to be the exclusive apparel outfitter for all 29 National Basketball Association teams for 10 years, in a deal similar to last year's agreement with the National Football League.

Reebok said Wednesday the agreement takes full effect beginning in the 2004-2005 season, once contracts between individual teams and Nike, Champion and Puma have expired. But the company will have exclusive rights to all team replica jerseys by the 2002-2003 season.

Terms of the deal were not immediately disclosed.

"I think the NBA deal is kind of a question mark because it extends out very long, we don't really know where the NBA is going to be in four years," Seth Martin, equity analyst with IDEAglobal, told CNNfn's Money Gang.

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But Faye Landes, a Bernstein analyst who follows the company, said the deal is a good opportunity, considering the company already has the infrastructure from the NFL deal.

"Reebok is a small company, relatively speaking, and these opportunities are a good thing," Landes said. "In for a penny, in for a pound, so why not leverage the infrastructure."

UBS Warburg analyst Jeff Edelman said the NFL deal was better in terms of scope and visibility, but thought the NBA agreement was a good way to build Reebok's brand.

Reebok's deal also applies to all Women's National Basketball Association teams and teams in NBA's development league.

The company will have exclusive rights to supply and market all on-court apparel, including uniforms, shooting shirts, warm-ups, jerseys and practice gear for all NBA and WNBA teams, as well as the NBDL, a development league.

Reebok will also have, with limited exceptions, exclusive rights to market and sell headwear, T-shirts, fleece and other apparel.

Shares of Reebok (RBK: up $0.89 to $32.90, Research, Estimates) rose on the news, a couple of dollars of the company's 52-week high. graphic


-- from staff and wire reports

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