It’s official, NIKE, Inc. have won the contract to be the exclusive on-court uniform and apparel provider for the NBA for the next 8 years.
With Nike losing some of their key football teams in the last year or two (Manchester United, Arsenal), and their presence in the football uniform world declining, regardless of their dominance in footwear, Nike have needed to make up for some lost ground… and they have.
Having taken the contract from their main rivals, adidas, Nike will now be the exclusive uniform provider for both the NBA and NFL, cementing their presence in American sports. With an 8 year contract starting with the 2017-2018 NBA season, I for one am very interested to see what Nike do with the kits. Hopefully they will not mess around with sleeves like adidas did. I will never see that as a good move, regardless of the fan sales potential.
It’s worth noting that adidas didn’t get outbid here, they simply withdrew from the bidding process all together. Either they felt that the NBA deal wasn’t doing it for them financially, or that their interests were better focused elsewhere, or maybe they didn’t want to go through the potential embarrassment of a bidding war. We will never know. It’s also worth noting that NIKE, Inc. have won the contract, not just Nike, and that gives room for possible Jordan and Converse activation, as hinted at by NIKE, Inc. CEO Mark Parker:
“We’re excited to bring the full power of our global reach, innovation and creativity to partner with the NBA and grow the game in a way only NIKE can. In NIKE, Jordan and Converse we have three of the most connected brands in the world, and look forward to making the global growth of the game a successful strategy for both the NBA and NIKE.” – Mark Parker
We shall see what the future holds…