Authentic sports jerseys are expensive and infrequently worn, but that doesn't stop fans from wanting to own as many as possible from all their favorite players. So why not borrow them?
Meet Rep the Squad - the company is essentially Netflix (well, the old DVD-version of Netflix) for sports jerseys. For $20 a month the startup will send you one authentic jersey at a time that you can wear to a game, to the bar or around the house. You keep it as long as you want, and once you return it they'll send you the next one on your list.
The jerseys will always be 100% authentic and authorized by each respective league - meaning for NBA jerseys fans will get the new Nike ones, with a built-in interactive chip. There's also a youth option for $17 per month, with smaller versions of the same jerseys that adults get. All jerseys are also professionally cleaned and inspected before being re-sent out.
When Rep the Squad launched this summer they offered jerseys from five NFL teams. Today the startup is expanding into the NBA, with the launch of jerseys from the Warriors, Nuggets, Pistons and Supersonics - and more to come before the All-Star Game in February.
And while you'd think that teams would frown upon Rep the Squad since it potentially takes away from their own retail business, the increase in engagement may be worth just as much. Fans love wearing jerseys to games and Rep the Squad lets them do that even if it wouldn't have been affordable the tradition way.
Brandon Schneider, Senior Vice President of the Golden State Warriors explained “Rep The Squad has strong vision and leadership with a distinct opportunity to broaden fan consumption behavior. Bringing this sharing economy model more deeply into the sports space further enhances fan engagement and gets them into the jerseys they want.”
Rep the Squad is also announcing an additional $1M in seed funding today, to add to the $1.5M raised when they launched over the summer. This $2.5M will help them expand into additional leagues and markets throughout the U.S.
New investors in this continued seed round include Brand Foundry Ventures and ex-NFL players Marcus Trufant and Lance Moore. They join other current NFL players like Doug Baldwin and Russell Okung.
- This article originally appeared on TechCrunch.