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Fleet Feet Snaps Up JackRabbit, Sprints Ahead in Specialty Run

Fleet Feet has agreed to acquire JackRabbit from affiliates of CriticalPoint Capital.

The acquisition was announced today, and Fleet Feet said via statement the transaction is expected to close in early December. The transaction, according to Fleet Feet, includes all JackRabbit brick-and-mortar locations, which spans 15 states, as well as the Jackrabbit.com e-commerce business.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“This acquisition creates a nationally connected-and-supported network of 250 community-based retail stores, all poised to deliver an exceptional experience for customers, and I couldn’t think of a better outcome for all involved,” Fleet Feet president and CEO Joey Pointer said in a statement.

JackRabbit was founded in 2011 as the Running Specialty Group, the specialty running store consolidation effort by The Finish Line, and was acquired in 2017 by affiliates of CriticalPoint Capital.

According to Fleet Feet, Jackrabbit.com will redirect to Fleetfeet.com as soon as the transaction finalizes in December, and long-term, JackRabbit branding will transition to Fleet Feet by the end of 2022. Also, Fleet Feet said it will incorporate its Fit ID 3D foot scanning experience into all locations by the end of Q1 2022 as part of its effort to infuse its brand experience at critical customer touchpoints.

“We believe that with the right running partner, there’s no limit to how far we can go,” JackRabbit CEO Bill Kirkendall said in a statement. “In Fleet Feet, JackRabbit has found an incredible partner for the long haul that will benefit our brand, staff, customers and communities, and we can’t wait to move forward together.”

The acquisition of JackRabbit is Fleet Feet’s latest strategic brick-and-mortar investment this year. This plan included the addition of four franchise locations over the past 10 months, which the company said in a statement was part of a succession plan for retiring owners. Also, Fleet Feet acquired Central Florida independent running retailer FitNiche.

Fleet Feet has opened five new stores this year, and said it has two more planned by year’s end.

The acquisition comes during a year when Fleet Feet has experienced periods of record sales growth. According to Fleet Feet, August was its all-time highest sales month with a 34% year-over-year increase. For Q3, the company said sales were up 33%, with digital sales up more than 32% compared to Q3 2020.

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