Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is expanding its reach in the outdoor apparel and equipment space.
The retailer, No. 4 in the Internet Retailer 2016 Top 500 Guide, announced this morning it bought Moosejaw (No. 261) for about $51 million in a deal that closed on Monday. Moosejaw CEO Eoin Comerford will remain with the company as part of the deal, as will Moosejaw’s more than 350 employees.
“Moosejaw will continue to operate its site and stores as it has in the past, and will be run as a standalone and complementary brand to our other e-commerce sites,” Wal-Mart said in a statement. In addition to Moosejaw.com, the retailer operates 10 stores.
The Moosejaw deal expands Wal-Mart’s reach in the outdoor gear space. Moosejaw sells more than 400 brands online, including Patagonia, The North Face, Garmin and others. The company also manufactures its own private-label apparel and gear. “Apparel and accessories is now the No. 1 category for digital commerce, according to comScore, and we gain the experience of another well-established e-commerce player, this time in the active outdoor category,” Wal-Mart said.
Moosejaw generated an Internet Retailer-estimated $97.2 million in online sales in 2015, up 16% from $83.8 million the previous year, according to Internet Retailer’s Top500Guide.com. Moosejaw’s year-over-year growth rate of 16% outpaced all other sporting goods retailers in both the Top 500 (13.3%) and the U.S. Top 1,000 (13.6%).
This is Wal-Mart’s second acquisition of a Top 500 retailer so far this year. In January, Wal-Mart acquired online shoe and apparel retailer ShoeBuy.com Inc. (No. 101) for $70 million. Those deals follow the retail giant’s $3.3 billion acquisition of Jet.com Inc. last August.