A longtime locally owned sporting goods business in North Charleston is now part of a new team.
T&T Sportsman's Shop at 5064 Rivers Ave. was sold Wednesday to BSN Sports, a direct marketer and distributor of sporting goods to the school and league markets.
Based near Dallas, the buyer is a division of Varsity Brands. T&T's name will change to BSN Sports.
Financial terms of the sale were not disclosed.
T&T, previously owned by Buddy Lenhardt and Ben Thrash, has been operating in the Lowcountry since 1946.
"It combines us with a company of enormous resources, with manpower, inventory and technology — all the things that help us do our job better," Lenhardt said Thursday in the shop where he will go from president to head of sales.
Thrash, formerly T&T vice president, will become the BSN branch manager.
The former owners called the move a win for the shop's customers and 18 employees, all of which will stay on, Lenhardt said.
“This is another step forward in our company’s journey of over 73 years, and we are truly excited to join BSN Sports," Lenhardt and Thrash said in a joint statement. "Their national reputation, immense resources and cutting-edge technology will allow us to build on our trusted relationships and exceptional service."
The new owner hopes to continue the build on the acquired company's established track record.
"Specifically, we will ensure that T&T preserves the ‘best of’ its culture and presence in the community, while, at the same time, Lowcountry customers benefit from BSN Sports’ unparalleled inventory, industry-leading technology and superior sales platform," said Terry Babilla, BSN Sports' president.
Lenhardt and Thrash will maintain ownership of the silk-screen printing and embroidery business, changing the name to B&B Printing. It will continue to operate on site.
T&T and former competitor Sportsman's Shop merged in 2011, in the aftermath of the Great Recession. Sportsman's Shop closed its 28,000-square-foot store on King Street and joined T&T on Rivers Avenue.
Lenhardt was president of the former Sportsman's Shop while Thrash, whose family founded the original T&T Sports in Columbia in 1948, was president of T&T.
The former Charleston-area T&T, open since 1961, was a separate entity from the Midlands business.
BSN offers its Sideline Store operation at several high schools throughout the Charleston region, including Burke, Goose Creek, Hanahan, Berkeley, Summerville, Ashley Ridge, Cane Bay and Colleton, according to its website.
Lenhardt said BSN already had a presence in the Charleston area with outside sales representatives. Now, it will have a local shop and office.