The Harlem Globetrotters Sign with IMG for Consumer Products Expansion in Preparation for its Centennial Celebration in 2026

Harlem globetrotters

The World-Famous Harlem Globetrottersthe originators of basketball style, captured by dynamic athletes with unmatched skills, have signed with licensing giant IMG to further develop the brand in anticipation of their 100th anniversary milestone in 2026, it was announced by Bruno Maglione, President of IMG’s licensing business and Keith Dawkins, President, Harlem Globetrotters & Herschend Entertainment Studios.


“I can’t count the number of “firsts” that have marked the history of the Harlem Globetrotters, not least of which their dazzling style of play which anticipated by many years the dynamism we see from the best players in the modern NBA,” said Maglione. “From the largest attendance ever at a basketball game, to iconic players like Wilt Chamberlain, to being the only team ever admitted to the Basketball Hall of Fame, the richness of their legacy is unparalleled and more relevant than ever. We will be looking both forward and back as we celebrate the story of this legendary franchise with products and brand partners.”


Founders of the fusion of sport with entertainment, the Harlem Globetrotters occupy a unique and special space in the American sports and entertainment landscape, as well as in the history of African-American integration into mainstream US professional sports. By the time the NBA began signing Black players in 1950, the Globetrotters had been touring in the United States for some 25 years. Notably, in 1948 and 1949 the Globetrotters stunned the public by beating the then-world-champion Minneapolis Lakers in both years in real games, proving that in addition to their crowd-pleasing theatrics, they were seriously talented basketball players who could compete and prevail over the best teams in the world.


“The Harlem Globetrotters continue to lead and redefine global basketball culture. With their athleticism, exceptional skills, unique brand of humor, and their ability to connect with cultures around the globe they’ve inspired millions and ushered in an irreplicable brand of sports entertainment that’s beloved by all,” said Dawkins. “As we approach our 100-year anniversary in 2026, our partnership with IMG will be instrumental in deepening our connection with fans, new and old, around the world.”


Recognized by the United Nations in 1951 as “ambassadors of extraordinary goodwill,” the Harlem Globetrotters have been spreading its goodwill throughout its legendary 98-year history. Today, the organization tour the world playing over 200 games domestically throughout North America and over 150 games internationally throughout continents including Asia, the Americas, Europe, Australia, and much more.


Under the new agreement, IMG will draw inspiration from the legendary team’s history and iconic brand identity to develop a wide range of products and experiences from toys, collectibles and memorabilia, to publishing and video games. Equally, IMG will be seeking an official outfitter and footwear partner to carry the Harlem Globetrotters into their next century.