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Hat World to acquire Sports Avenue stores

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Locally based Hat World has agreed to acquire the assets of Sports Avenue, an Illinois-based competitor that operates 46 retail stores and 13 branded e-commerce sites—including The Purdue Shop and ThePurdueShop.com.
 
Terms of the deal, announced Wednesday, were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in Genesco's second fiscal quarter.

Sports Avenue sells licensed sports apparel and accessories, both under its own name and through team-affiliated sites. Founded in 1986, the company posted revenue of about $42 million last year.

The acquisition comes six months after Hat World said it would buy 37-store athletic retail chain Sports Fan-Attic Inc. for an undisclosed amount. The subsidiary of Nashville, Tenn.-based Genesco Inc. also acquired Impact Sports Inc. and Great Plains Sports, two firms that make and market team uniforms and apparel.

Hat World was founded in 1995 in Indianapolis and acquired its largest competitor, Lids Corp., in 2001. Retail giant Genesco paid $175 million for the company in 2004, and it has continued to grow under the publicly traded company. Today it operates more than 850 locations across the country.

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