History of the company
Named after the Greek goddess of victory, Nike was founded in 1964 by University of Oregon athletics coach Bill Bowerman, and athlete Phil Knight. Initially started as a sneaker distribution company under the name Blue Ribbon Sport (BRS), the company sold trainers out of the back of Bowerman’s car at athletics competitions. It soon progressed, and opened the first store was opened in 1967. A crucial moment came in 1971, when Nike first used the iconic Swoosh, designed by Carolyn Davidson. The name was changed from BRS to Nike in the same year. The Swoosh was later trademarked in 1974.
Product and company
Nike is headquartered in in Beaverton Oregon, where the company was founded. In total it has 74,400 employees, with 384 retail US stores. Internationally the company has 758 stores, in 58 countries on every continent.
Nike is currently the number one sports apparel company in the world, specialising in the designing, manufacturing and marketing of sports footwear, clothing, equipment and accessories. The key Nike offerings are: Running, NIKE Basketball, the Jordan Brand, Football (Soccer), Men’s Training, Women’s Training, Action Sports, Sportswear (the sports-inspired lifestyle products) and Golf. Nike Inc. also includes Hurley (purchased in May 2002), and Converse (purchased in 2003) as part of its subsidiaries.
Known for their remarkable marketing campaigns, Nike’s first was launched in 1976 with the tag line “There is no finish line”, and in fact featured no Nike product. This helped them them achieve 50% of the market share of US athletic shoe market by 1980. The now ubiquitous “Just Do It”, created by Dan Wieden, was chosen by Advertising Age as one of the five best ad slogans of the 20th century. Wieden+Kennedy, founded by the same Dan Wieden, remain Nike’s lead advertising agency, and continue to produce definitive advertising campaigns.
One of the first to adopt internet marketing, and sponsorship of elite athletes, the Nike brand is now impossible to avoid. Known for sponsoring only the best, some of their key partnerships are shown below:
- All NFL team uniforms
- The NBA and WNBA
- Indian National Cricket Team
- Manchester City, Barcelona, and Paris Saint Germain (PSG) football teams
- Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Cristiano Ronaldo, Kobe Bryant, and LeBron James
It is therefore unsurprising that the brand alone was considered to valued at $29.6 billion, as of 2017. It is currently estimated that Nike has a market share of 27.51% of the global athletic footwear market.
Nike stocks (NKE) are traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). They make up part of the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DSIA), the S&P 100, and the S&P 500. As of 2017, Nike operates with a revenue of $34.35 billion.
Nike went public on the 2nd December 1980 at an initial price of $0.134 per share (price adjusted for stock splits). The Nike stock price has generally moved in the upwards direction, with recent fluctuations available in these NKE charts. Brief downturns occured in the recession of 2008, and a briefly in 2015. An investment in Nike at its IPO would have yielded around 20% return per annum, without reinvesting dividends.
Market capitalisation crossed $1 billion in 1991, $10 billion in 2006, and as of April 2018, the market capitalisation was $108 billion, with a current share price of share price. Nike have been regularly completing the buyback of their own shares. In November 2015 the company approved a $12 billion, four-year share repurchase programme. As of May 31 2017, 79.8 million shares have been repurchased at an approximate cost of $4.4 billion.