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ESPN launches digital shops for cricket fans

MUMBAI: Global sports media brand ESPN has launched digital shops across its ESPNcricinfo.com and ESPN.com.au sites. The online stores, developed in collaboration with Velocity Brand Management’s retail division (VBM Retail), will provide cricket fans with a wide range of licensed and fan-specific merchandise along with branded and co-branded products.

Fans can access the shops through a ‘Shop’ tab and button, available in the navigation of each of the ESPN site homepages. Additional digital shops will debut across other ESPN digital properties globally in 2014, including ESPN Scrum and ESPN Footytips.

The ESPNcricinfo.com shop, available on Shop.ESPNcricinfo.com and ESPNcricinfoshop.com, features a whole gamut of cricket products including apparel, accessories, novelties, equipment and memorabilia. Additionally, the shop will offer a wide array of licensed team merchandises along with ESPNcricinfo branded and co-branded products.

The shop is set to offer Indian cricket lovers an opportunity to purchase and collect cricket items for personal memorial value or as investment. In addition to an extensive collection of sports-related and fan-specific merchandise available to consumers in Australia and New Zealand, Shop.espn.com.au and ESPNShop.com.au offer league licensed products from the AFL, NRL, Cricket Australia, V8 Supercars, rugby union, football, netball and the NBA.

It will expand to include items from the NFL, NHL, NCAA college sports and ESPN-licensed products. “Around the world, ESPNcricinfo reaches tens of millions of sports fans on computers and mobile devices every month,” said ESPNcricinfo and ESPN Digital Media India head Ramesh Kumar.

“As consumer purchases through digital channels increase globally, we’re excited to be able to bring a convenient and trusted place for fans to buy the gear and equipment they are looking for. Part of being a fan is the pride we all take in our teams and passions, and these shops will be a great platform for fans looking to find the right products to showcase that pride or find great products.”

VBM Retail, which will run the ESPN digital shop sites, is developing branded and co-branded licensed product collections utilising ESPN logos and drawing inspiration from brand personality and sport-specific cultural elements for each of the online stores.