Nike’s Rise To The Top Of Sports

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Nike is the most powerful sports brand in the world.

Today it’s worth over $44 billion, but it wasn’t always that way.

Nike’s Rise To The Top in Sports

Blue Ribbon Sports was founded by Bill Bowerman and Phil Knight in 1964.

Bowerman was Knight’s track and field coach at the University of Oregon.

Knight was looking for a new name after breaking ties w/ a Japanese manufacturer.

What Nike Was Almost Called

Knight liked the name Dimension Six.

But he wasn’t sold on it:

Jeff Johnson, the company’s 1st employee, told Knight he’d seen the word “Nike” in a dream.

He called the office on the day the patent was due and they never looked back.

But a logo was needed…

The Nike Logo

Phil Knight went to Portland State and hired the first graphic arts student he could find.

Carolyn Davidson.

carolyn davidson nike logo story

She charged $35 for the iconic “Swoosh” logo, worth $26 billion today.

What’s cool though:

Knight awarded Davidson 500 shares of Nike stock (worth $1m today).

Just Do It!

The story behind it is dark…

Serial Killer Gary Gilmore, said “Let’s do it” right before a firing squad executed him in 1977.

Dan Wieden changed “Let’s do it” to “Just do it” for Nike’s first TV commercial in 1987.

Michael Jordan

Air Jordan was 100% centered around MJ: • sneakers • apparel • own brand

Nike offered him $500k/yr (3x what competitors were offering).

He took the deal and helped turn the Jordan Brand into a $4.7B enterprise.

highest paid nike athlete endorsements

Marketing Is Their Playbook

Nike spends $2B a year on marketing.

They endorse 51 of the 100 highest-paid athletes in the world: • Lebron • Serena • Ronaldo • Tiger • Melo • Nadal • Neymar

So powerful, athletes are first-name known.

Nike Athletes

• Ja Morant

• Luka Doncic

• Kyler Murray • Naomi Osaka • Kylian Mbappe • Scotty Scheffler • Youssoufa Moukoko • Giannis Antetokounpo

Here’s what’s interesting…

The average Nike athlete receives a small amount of cash ($5–10k) and credit towards merchandise 2x that.

Nike Runs the Sponsorship World.

Official Sponsor of: — Team USA — NBA — NFL — MLB

total nike sponsors and money spent

Their logo is behind 52% of all Division 1 FBS football teams.

Nike in the Future

They have filed 7 trademark applications for the metaverse including: — Just Do It — Jumpman — Air Jordan

They also acquired RTFKT, a company that makes digital sneakers.

Investing at IPO

If you invested $1,000 in Nike’s IPO it would be worth over $900,000 today.

The stock has done seven 2-for-1 splits and is currently trading for over $130 today.

Nike doesn’t just dominate sports…

10 most valuable apparel brands in the world: #1 Nike
Nike is the most valuable apparel brand in the world.

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