NBALab x Action Face
"The NBA receives hundreds of new licensee applications annually, but fewer than 10 are granted permission to use NBA intellectual property on their products. As the sports licensing business has become more top heavy in recent years, breaking through is increasingly difficult for smaller companies, even though that’s usually where you find the most innovative products.
That’s where NBALab comes in. Started in 2015 as a skunkworks for young companies making “basketball-inspired” products, the operation now has around 40 NBA licensees. Those companies make everything from Pair’s licensed eyewear and Pearl Street’s NBA-logoed caviar tins, to Hyperfly’s unique apparel designs that feature amalgams of Japanese katakana characters and art, along with NBA logos, and a more recent collection of Mandarin characters and NBA indicia.
Accordingly, products that would never get a second look through normal channels make it to retail. There are the Small- Stars collectible figurines from IPT, and Action Face 3D figures, customizable through use of a face scan app and 3D printers, so fans become part of the collectible."