January 7, 2005, 12:00 AM

Sport Supply Group swings for the consumer market with GSI, Amazon

Well-established as an online seller of sports equipment to institutions and sports organizations, Sport Supply Group is hitting the broader consumer market through an agreement with e-commerce platform provider GSI Commerce, Sport Supply said this week.

Kurt Peters

Executive Editor

 

Well-established as an online seller of sports equipment to institutions and sports organizations, Sport Supply Group Inc. is now hitting the consumer market through an agreement with e-commerce platform provider GSI Commerce Inc., Sport Supply COO Terry Babilla says.

Sport Supply, a manufacturer and direct marketer, will use GSI to sell through GSI’s online retail partners, including Dick’s Sporting Goods, the same products Sport Supply now sells through its own general consumer web site, eSportsonline.com, Babilla tells InternetRetailer.com.

This is the second move Sport Supply has made to expand its direct-to-consumer sales. It has sold more than $1 million worth of eSportsonline merchandise in a marketing arrangement started a year ago with Amazon.com, Babilla says. If consumers search for a sporting goods item on Amazon and choose a basketball listed from eSportsonline, the order is placed through Amazon’s shopping cart and passed to Sport Supply for fulfillment.

Sport Supply is using GSI and Amazon to expand its consumer sales year-round and to include the busy fourth quarter, Babilla says.

“This seasonality complements our core business of institutional sporting goods sales, which are traditionally softer in the December quarter,” says chairman and CEO Geoffrey P. Jurick. “Recognizing high order volume in all four quarters will enable us to operate more profitably year-round."

Sport Supply also sells directly to educational institutions, military bases, sports leagues and other organizations through catalogs and e-commerce sites it operates in association with sports equipment dealers. But it sees partnerships with GSI and Amazon as the most efficient means of expanding in the broader consumer market, Babilla says. “We’re reaching more independent consumers without having to buy consumer mailing lists and increasing our costs,” he says.

Sport Supply Group is owned 53% by Emerson Radio Corp.

 

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