After acquiring GK ICON and its 10 franchises 5 years ago from founder Richard Lee, Challenger Sports has developed the brand into the largest goalkeeping coaching company in the world. With GK ICON franchises and merchandise expanding in 2020, Challenger Sports has agreed to sell the franchise business back to Richard Lee.
With this restructure, Challenger Sports strives to continue helping grow all areas of the GK ICON brand and Richard, who has always retained a consultancy role, will now take ownership of franchising while using his team of experts to continue moving the business forward. Challenger Sports will still own the GK ICON brand and its intellectual property and will continue to provide all hardware, merchandising divisions, and support for operations going forward.
Richard and his team will become responsible for the day to day running operations as well as the growth of franchisees, with more information coming soon.
With this acquisition becoming official, James Clark, Head of Challenger Teamwear UK said “It has always been important to bring the best experience on and off the field to everyone involved in GK ICON. Now, with Richard and his team taking responsibility for its franchising division, there really is a team of experts to drive and enhance the overall experience. Challenger Sports through myself and others will continue to support and help drive the brand forward to continue being a worldwide authority on all things goalkeeping, offering all our customers a fantastic experience and products alike”
Richard Lee, Founder of GK ICON said “We are delighted that we have got this deal in place and agreed. We are very confident given our 10 plus years experience of managing these kinds of operations that we can deliver a better product to a wider audience going forward. We have a strong team to help deliver the next generation of international goalkeepers. We will be looking to partner with some of the best coaches globally to help set us apart from other operators. This is something that is exciting to me personally and will make up another piece of the jigsaw to becoming a goalkeeping powerhouse. I’d like to thank Challenger who has been fantastic custodians of the brand and I believe the partnership going forward will only benefit everyone. The brilliant gloves and apparel developed by James and the team will only enhance our offering”.
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