Maker of Louisville Slugger bats announces deal to sell brand to Wilson Sporting Goods

MarketsAssociated Press

The company that makes Louisville Slugger bats has announced a deal to sell the iconic brand to rival Wilson Sporting Goods Co.

Wilson's deal to acquire the global brand, sales and innovation rights from Louisville Slugger's parent, Hillerich & Bradsby Co., still requires approval by H&B shareholders.

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Under terms of the agreement announced Monday, H&B will become Wilson's exclusive manufacturing partner for wood bats. H&B will continue to manufacture wood bats at its factory in Louisville, Kentucky.

Financial details were not immediately announced.

H&B's Bionic Gloves division and Powerbilt golf brand are not part of the deal.

H&B has made Louisville Slugger bats since 1884. H&B CEO John A. Hillerich IV says the decision to sell the brand was difficult, but says the company believes it needs to pursue a new business model.