The C9 Champion activewear line will disappear from Target shelves

The clothing company announced it won't renew its Target partnership in 2020.
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An exclusive partnership between Champion and Target has proved popular among shoppers, but will be coming to an end over the next 18 months.

For the past 15 years Champion has sold its C9 activewear line at Target stores, but both companies announced on Wednesday the contract will not be renewed when it expires in January 2020.

That means C9 gear will gradually be phased out of Target stores starting then, with CNBC reporting the announcement sent Hanesbrands share price plunging 19.5 percent early Wednesday, with Target's dropping around 2.5 percent.

In its quarterly results, Hanesbrands CEO Gerald Evans said: "The C9 by Champion program at Target is a mature program after 15 successful years,”

"Overall, Champion has significant momentum in all geographies globally, and we will continue to focus on growth across our Champion portfolio through expanded geographic penetration, product lines and distribution channels, including online and retail."

In short, Champion says it doesn't expect the end of the Target deal – which generated $380 million in annual sales – would affect its aim to generate more than $2 billion in sales by 2022.

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For Target, the end of a long-running partnership comes at a time when it's amidst a serious overhaul of its exclusive brands.

It has launched numerous new apparel, homewares and furniture lines over the past year-and-a-half, which includes a children's soccer line from Umbro, and a women's activewear line called JoyLab.

In a statement to the Star Tribune, Target said it's "proud" of its partnership with Hanes and "remain focused on providing a great experience during this time of transition."

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