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Western Carolina Launches New Online Fan Store

Sept. 23, 2011

CULLOWHEE, N.C. - The Western Carolina University athletic department has launched its new online store for all official WCU merchandise. The new store - aligned with new merchandising partner Advanced Online - will offer a broader selection of products to show support for the Catamounts.

"We're excited to have this partnership with Advanced-Online and we believe that this will greatly enhance our merchandise offering to our fanbase," said Larry Arbaugh, Associate Athletic Director for Business Development and Media Relations.

Advanced-Online is a unique provider of online stores for the collegiate and corporate market with over 100 web sites. Clients include Ball State University, Marshall University, North Texas, Southern Conference, Big South Conference, as well as Lockheed Martin, Bell Helicopter, Fujitsu and many others.

Advanced-Online specializes in providing technology for online stores, but also an on-demand production model allowing clients like Western Carolina to have access to over 800 products - a number which will increase to around 1,000 items within the year - all produced and shipped in 24 hours. The Advanced-Online back order rate is by far the gold standard in the industry at below a fourth of one percent of all items shipped.

New items available in the Catamount Fan Shop include wall skins - attachable wall art - featuring WCU logos, as well as basketball and football jerseys, both of which can be personalized with name and number for the Catamounts' biggest fans. Clothing by name brands including Adidas, Nike, Under Armour and Cutter & Buck is available along with tailgating items with WCU logos, luggage, gifts and other items can be purchased at the Catamount Fan Shop.

"Some other exciting aspects to this site to come will be the ability in the near future to add a special login for Catamount Club members to buy exclusive Catamount Club-branded merchandise and the ability to add a reseller's network that will greatly enhance our ability to push Western Carolina-branded items into retail outlets throughout the region," continued Arbaugh.

"Through Advanced-Online, we will the capability in the near future to create a reseller's network. Select retailers will have the ability to order at wholesale pricing with no minimum order quantities. This reduces the barrier for entry for retailers in our regional market. We look forward to getting feedback from our fanbase on our merchandising through our new site to Advanced-Online to continually improve the breadth of our product offering."

Fans can continue to access the online store as before through CatamountSports.com. Once on the official site for Western Carolina University athletics, fans can click on the "Shop" tab or the online banners and will then be directed to the Catamount Fan Shop.

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