Fanatics reached an agreement to become the exclusive retail and merchandising partner of the Australian Football League (AFL).

As part of the ten-year partnership, Fanatics has master license rights to manufacture, market and sell AFL apparel and accessories, including fan fashion apparel, knitwear and bags, including, for the first time, an AFL line from Mitchell and Ness.

In addition, over the course of the partnership, AFL’s e-commerce and branded retail store rights will transition to Fanatics.

The partnership, which is Fanatics’ first with an Australian sporting league, marks a forward step in Fanatic’s expansion across Australia and New Zealand. It recently hired across the region, Essendon Football Club GM Tyler Emsden as director of business development and Thomas Rodger as licensing director, APAC, with more than 15 years of experience in retail, licensing and marketing, including 11 years at Warner Bros.

AFL Executive General Manager Customer and Commercial, Kylie Rogers, said the AFL was thrilled to be the first Australian sports league to partner with Fanatics.

Matthew Primack, senior vice president for business affairs and development at Fanatics, commented, “Australian fans are famously passionate about sport, and we believe that historically they have been underserved relative to other markets when it comes to the merchandise made available, the distribution of that merchandise and the freshness of the product. We’re excited and grateful for the opportunity with the AFL, and we are also very excited to see what we can do holistically across all sports in the region and beyond merchandise with the AFL. The Australian fans will have more access to more relevant products as we continue to grow our presence in this sport-mad country.”