Fanatics Buys Topps Sports and Entertainment Lines for $500 Million

Fanatics Buys Topps Sports and Entertainment Lines for $500 Million

More pieces are falling into place now that Fanatics has reached an agreement to buy Topps. Fanatics acquired the future MLB/MLBPA licensing rights in August 2021, setting into motion a huge change in the hobby. There were still questions about how this would play out, though. The Topps deal allows Fanatics to start card production much sooner than expected and provides an established card brand to work with.

Fanatics has also secured card exclusives with the National Basketball Association (NBA), the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) and the NFL Players Association (NFLPA).

According to CNBC, the purchase price comes in at around $500 million for Topps' sports and entertainment lines. Topps had planned to go public via SPAC at a valuation of $1.3 billion.

The deal also includes Topps' existing licenses for UEFA, Formula One, Bundesliga, and Major League Soccer cards.

Fanatics CEO, Michael Rubin, confirmed that the sale involves the acquisition of 350 Topps employees, as well.

Speaking with the Wall Street Journal, Rubin added, "We wanted to start with a foundation that was in place. That’s a much better approach than building this from scratch. We have a vision to expand and do new things to grow new businesses. A lot of times we’ll look to, ‘Is it faster to build pieces or to buy pieces?’ And if it makes more sense to buy, we’re very happy to do that."

However, per Forbes, there could be potential roadblocks based on antitrust laws.

Topps' candy and gift card lines are not part of the Fanatics sale. These are being rebranded as The Bazooka Companies, Inc.

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Trey Treutel

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Trey is a lifelong sports fanatic. He is a huge fan of the NBA and NFL, as well as soccer, college basketball and college football. As a kid, he collected football and basketball cards. In more recent years, he started collecting basketball cards again on a whim and has since expanded to other sports and entertainment options.

User Comments

  1. My bigger concern is the rumored push to acquire a grading company….

  2. No more Bazooka backs on GQ anymore. That’s the real tragedy with that acquisition.

  3. Maybe once fanatics gets an idea of what size of the hobby is, they can cut down on mass production of trading cards, also eliminate such products as opening day, gypsy queen & allen & ginter, also reduce the number of short prints in a standard run to make the whole series easier to acquire. The fanatics deal seems good much like when topps printed cards for all 4 sports, back from the 60’s thru the 80’s.

  4. This is a good move for Fanatics.

    Acquiring a successful sports card brand that’s been around for 70 years just makes sense.

    Why try to reinvent the wheel!

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