Nike is a world renowned brand for selling top quality shoes, clothing, and accessories. There is hardly any person who has not heard of the company. It is now a multinational corporation which deals with the design, approval, manufacturing, and selling of several everyday use items and commodities.
With its origin in Eugene, Oregon, U.S. Nike Inc. was originally called ‘Blue Ribbon Sports’ and operated as the distributor for a Japanese shoe company, Onitsuka Tigers. The company was founded by Bill Bowerman and Phil Knight on January 25, 1964.
These days Nike is one of the first choices when it comes to buying shoes and other stuff. Nike offers premium quality and every single product from Nike comes with assured quality. Moreover, it is easy and relatively cheaper to buy Nike products off of the internet, from the comfort of the home. Many times, companies and online retailers like BravoDeal provide customers with discount coupons, especially during the festive and holiday season.
However, the MNC has not always been the way we know it now. It has had its fair share of history and struggles. Provided below is a brief history of the brand:
The now multinational company started out as a distributor for Japanese shoe maker, Onitsuka Tigers. They imported the shoes and sold them at the University of Oregon, to the track athletes. Bill Bowerman was an American track coach who has coached several athletes over a period of almost 25 years, several of which were Olympic medalists.
It was his idea to use a waffle iron for making the soles of the shoes, which then revolutionized the world of shoe making. Bill is also credited for designing the very first Nike shoes, and his formula of removing a few ounces off of the shoes made them unbelievably fast.
Phil Knight was an athlete student of Bill at the University of Oregon. Phil had a keen interest in running and making running more comfortable for all. After graduating from college, he went on a trip around the world in a quest for the same.
He reached Japan and discovered the fine quality running shoes being manufactured at Onitsuka Tigers. He was highly impressed and called for a meeting with the world famous shoe maker and bagged the deal as the authorized seller and distributor in the United States of the shoes manufactured at Onitsuka Tigers.
Bowerman and Knight later joined forces and started Blue Ribbon Sports at Eugene, Oregon, and laid the foundation of Nike.
The expanding business
During the very first year of business, in 1964, Blue Ribbon Sports had a massive profit of around $8000 from selling the shoes from the Japanese shoe maker. Within two years, with over $20000 saved up, the company hired the first employee, and in 1966, Blue Ribbon Sports opened its very first retail shop in California.
With the increasing demand for high quality shoes at much cheaper values, the workload increased as well. The company increased its business and expanded its retail to Massachusetts in 1967.
Birth of ‘Nike’
By the end of 1970, Blue Ribbon Sports was all ready to make a debut in the market with its new name, logo, and shoes. In 1971, Blue Ribbon Sports changed its name to “Nike”, which was taken from the name of the Greek Goddess of Victory. Nike and Onitsuka Tigers broke all ties as Nike was ready to launch Bill Bowerman’s infamous “iron waffle pan” trainers. Along with this, Nike also released Swoosh, its official logo, designed by Carolyn Davidson and it represents the wing of the Goddess of Victory. The logo was patented by Nike in 1974.
By 1980, Nike had acquired over 50 percent of the US sports market and since then, it has been promoting and advertising all its products and new releases.
Diversification of products
Ever since the booming business in 1980, Nike has never looked back. It started experimenting and releasing different products in many varieties. Nike releases Pegasus, the very first range of running shoes which are still continued today and have demand in the market.
Nike then started its own clothing line in the early 1980s and they were an instant hit and a commercial success. Following the magnificent success of the clothing line, Nike released its most famous creations, the Air Jordans in 1984. Air Jordans were initially only made for Michael Jordan but were later made available to the public later that year.
Towards world domination
Nike gained acquisitions of many companies, such as Converse Inc. and Bauer. This made the company stand where it is today. This also helped in the process of diversification of its products and the increase in business all over the globe.
Nike set up its first headquarters in Washington County, Portland in the early 1990s. The giant started collaborating with world class sportsmen and athletes and started promoting their shoes and other products. This way Nike ensured that its products become a topic of discussion all over the globe.
But with great publicity came even greater accusations. Nike has been accused several times because of different reasons. The company has always been reluctant in sharing the data and the environment of work at its factories with the world.
The majority of the company’s manufacturing factories are located in Asia, where labour is readily and cheaply available. There have been several strikes at these factories due to poor working conditions and wages.
However, these all can simply be accusations to defame the giant. Nike has always been careful about its carbon emission and the effect of the company and its products on the environment.
Nike started the “Reuse a Shoe” program in the late 1990s, in which the company collects the used worn out shoes of the athletes and recycles them into a substance called Nike Grind, which is later used in making different sports grounds and selected Nike products.
Nike is a brand that every person is aware of and can be trusted blindly. It is known for its superior quality products, which are comfortable to use and easy to maintain.
However, people should be careful while ordering things online as a lot of fake and counterfeits are available in the market. Whilst ordering, make sure the dealer is a registered merchant with Nike. And if possible, place your orders directly at the official website of Nike.