Fanatics Strengthens Leadership Team as Global Growth Continues

Ignacio Beristain Borra joins from Adidas, Bill Tung from New Balance, Ian Nelson from Pentland Brands

MANCHESTER, UK (OCTOBER 5, 2018)- Fanatics, the global leader in licensed sports merchandise, has announced several additions to its International Leadership team as it continues to expand its operations worldwide.

Fanatics’ international presence has grown significantly over the past year, with the company now operating offices and fulfilment centres in the USA, UK, Germany, Spain, India, Hong Kong and Japan.

The global expansion is due in large part to the $1bn investment the company received in 2017 from the largest tech fund in history, Softbank’s Vision Fund, which identified Fanatics as one of the world’s transformative companies who would shape the future of global commerce.

To support and manage the significant growth of the company, Fanatics has recruited several experienced leaders to join the International Leadership Team.

Ignacio Beristain Borra has joined Fanatics to head up the Retail, Buying and Merchandising functions of the International business and to lead across Southern Europe. Ignacio has spent over 18 years at Adidas international where he held several positions and most recently served as Managing Director of the Global BU Real Madrid. He will join as the Managing Director of Southern Europe, Merchandising & Retail, responsible for Spain, Portugal, Italy and the global Retail, Buying and Merchandising functions.

Bill Tung joins the organisation having spent 13 years building Columbia Sportswear’s International business and more recently having performed a similar role as Executive Vice President (International) for New Balance. Bill has extensive experience managing subsidiaries, distributors, agents and licensees, and developing product/design teams with a keen focus on local consumer/market needs. He joins as Managing Director for Fanatics Branded International.

Ian Nelson joins Fanatics as Product Marketing Director. Ian joins the organisation from Pentland Brands and has more than twenty years’ international brand building experience working with brands such as Marks and Spencer, Lacoste, Speedo, Canterbury and Ellesse. Ian will lead the Fanatics Branded product & marketing team, producing innovative and compelling propositions for Fanatics and its partners.

Zohar Ravid joins Fanatics as Director of Strategy and M&A. Prior to Fanatics, Zohar helped raise, form, and run a $100M growth equity fund and spent over a decade in investment banking, focused mostly on M&A in the technology sector. Zohar brings over $80 billion of global deal execution experience and will work with Fanatics International President, Steve Davis, to identify opportunities for the organisation to continue to grow its international capabilities and offering to its partners around the world.

Earlier this year, the organisation announced the appointments of Joachim Hilke, who will lead the Global Partnerships team, Masanori Kawana as Managing Director of Fanatics Japan, Colin Griffin as Global Operations Director and Ben Esser as Director of E-Commerce and Omnichannel.

Commenting on the new appointments, President of Fanatics International, Steve Davis, said: “I am delighted to welcome Ignacio, Bill, Zohar and Ian to Fanatics. They join the business at an exciting time as we grow our capabilities and work with more partners across the world to maximise the opportunities that our unique vertical commerce model gives us.”

“We have added considerable experience and expertise to the business in the last six months and I am excited about what each of these leaders will bring to our organisation, and importantly, to the partners that we work with around the world.”