The top 10 distribution channels where women buy licensed sports apparel, ranked by percentage of all women buying.

1 DISCOUNT STORES
All women:
33 percent
Licensed sports apparel purchasing at discount stores is driven primarily by consumers aged 25 and older.

2 SPORTS SPECIALTY STORES
All women:
28 percent
Women are more likely to purchase licensed sports apparel at sports specialty stores, such as Galyan’s, while men are more likely to turn to the Internet for their licensed sports apparel. Young women between the ages of 13 and 24, especially, are turning to this channel of distribution.

3 SPORTING GOODS STORES
All women:
22 percent
Women aged 25 to 34 buy the most licensed logoed clothing in sporting goods stores like Modell’s. Both women and men say that being fans of a team is their top reason for buying this category of clothing.

4 SPORTING EVENTS
All women:
20 percent
Sporting events attracted the most female buyers in the 35- to 44-year-old age group. Only 22 percent of men buy their logoed clothing at sporting events. Men are more likely than women to rate “authentic team-athlete license” as important to them when making a purchase.

5 COLLEGE STORES
All women:
20 percent
Not surprisingly, college stores are the second most popular distribution channel for women aged 13 to 24. Incidentally, this is a group that rarely sets foot in a factory outlet mall or shops via catalog or direct mail.

6 NATIONAL CHAINS
All women:
15 percent
National chains aren’t as strong in the licensed apparel department as might have been expected. At national retailers, sales of team-logoed apparel seems to rise and fall on the success of a team during a given season, while die-hard fans buy at discount stores, sporting goods stores and sports events.

7 INTERNET
All women:
14 percent
The 25- to 34-year-old group buys most often from online e-tailers than other age groups.MSNBCSports.com this month signed a deal with eFANshop, a Dallas company that runs online stores for major Web sites. The site will offer licensed sports apparel and merchandise.8 FACTORY OUTLETS
All women:
8 percent
The vagaries of team sports may pose a problem for factory outlets, which often sell last season’s overruns or poorly performing styles. Losing teams may find their jerseys on sale at outlet stores, but factory stores may have a tough time securing merchandise with championship team logos.

9* DEPARTMENT STORES
All women:
7 percent
The manufacturer, Activewear, sealed a five-year pact to be the NFL’s exclusive supplier of T-shirts, sweatshirts and other casualwear to J.C. Penney. Reebok signed a similar deal with Dillard’s. For Penney’s, a winning retail season would be a matchup between two large teams with a national following. Dillard’s may have the hometown advantage for local teams, but loyal fans may have little interest in teams beyond their own backyards.

10* DIRECT MAIL/CATALOGS
All women:
7 percent
There are few direct catalogs devoted to licensed sports apparel for women, which may explain the low ranking for this channel of distribution. Several e-tailers have taken advantage of direct-mail campaigns to drive business to their sites.

SOURCE: NPD FASHIONWORLD, PORT WASHINGTON, N.Y. * Indicates a tie, in no particular order

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