Going All in for Hunger

Fanatics

2. Zero Hunger

Overview

The organization- Fanatics Inc., is a domestic and international online retailer of licensed sportswear, equipment, and merchandise. Fanatics has exclusive deals with various professional leagues and teams to bring high-quality merchandise to fans. The company has developed long-term initiatives towards sustainability within the organization but has also created an initiative that promotes sustainability to society in general. This initiative is named the All-In Challenge.

Authors

Zakary Kapilevich

Zakary Kapilevich

Trisha Kelly

Trisha Kelly

Kimber Dubiel

Kimber Dubiel

Victoria Gonzalez

Victoria Gonzalez

School

St. John's University

St. John's University

Professor

Charles Wankel

Charles Wankel

Innovation

Fanatics’ Business Affairs and Licensing Coordinator, Ryan Ahmed, has shared information about the implementation and the success of this sustainability initiative. “The ALL IN Challenge is a Fanatics initiative that aims to be the world’s largest digital fundraiser in history by raising tens of millions of dollars to feed those in need.” This initiative has used its ties with professional sports, music, and entertainment figures to offer unique experiences and possessions to use as auction items giveaways. This challenge utilized its connections to raise a record amount of funding to combat hunger, the number two sustainable development goal of the United Nations. All of the proceeds from the fundraiser were directly donated to nonprofit organizations such as Meals on Wheels, No Kid Hungry, and America’s Food Fund. Each of these foundations shares the same goal as the All-In Challenge: combat hunger.


Going All in for Hunger

Inspiration

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought attention to the high-level food shortages in America. The inspiration behind the ALL IN Challenge came from the many students who relied on their public schools to provide two out of three meals on a daily basis. As the pandemic worsened and affected in-person learning and many employees (and parents) experienced layoffs, many children were left hungry and struggling to find access to food. The ALL IN challenge was created by Fanatics Executive Chairman Michael Rubin, who then asked Alan Tisch and Gary Vaynerchuk, as well as the rest of the Fanatics team, to make a change for children in these conditions during such times.

Overall impact

The All In challenge has impacted the business, society, and the environment around them. Much of the benefit came in brand awareness as well as goodwill towards the organization, but the landing page for the All in Challenge also redirected to the Fanatics website.

Business benefit

The motivation behind the All In Challenge was to help others who are in need. However, as a result of the remarkable work by this company, the fanatics site started to gain more traction after the challenge was announced. The company was seen in a positive light by the media as well as consumers. Like many other companies who make efforts towards sustainability, customers appreciate the positive social and environmental impact that this business has made, which has resulted in a boost in sales for Fanatics.

Social and environmental benefit

The social and environmental benefits that this challenge has created are as follows. The All In Challenge has raised millions of dollars for those who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. It helped to feed millions of Americans who have had difficulty finding food during these times. Additionally, Fanatics has more long-term goals toward becoming a more sustainable organization. Such efforts include the quality of life for its workers through collaboration with the Fair Labor Association, affiliation with the Sustainable Apparel Coalition which ensures that Fanatics products are as sustainable as possible, and plans to divert 100% of company waste from landfill disposal by the year 2030 which falls in line with the goals of the United Nations. Fanatics is committed to becoming as sustainable as possible and having various protocols in place to ensure continued efforts towards this goal. The company is also extremely transparent in its efforts. There is a web page available to the public that highlights the company’s dedication to sustainability, as well as its contributions to COVID-19 efforts.

Interview

Ryan Ahmed, Business Affairs and Licensing Coordinator

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Fanatics

Fanatics

Jacksonville, Florida, US

Business Website: https://www.fanatics.com/

Year Founded: 1995

Number of Employees: 1001 to 5000

Fanatics is an American retailer (both online and in stores, but primarily online) of licensed sportswear, sports equipment, and merchandise. They also operate the e-commerce websites of all major professional sports leagues, major media brands, and over 150 college and professional teams. They have over 1800 product vendors and have 11 corporate locations across the continental United States