NIKE : Evolution of Marketing Strategy

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Case Details:

Case Code : MKTA018
Case Length : 16 Pages
Period : 1958-2004
Pub Date : 2005
Teaching Note :Not Available
Organization : Nike
Industry : Consumer Goods
Countries : USA

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Background Note

Early History
In 1958, Phil Knight, a keen athlete and an undergraduate at the University of Oregon and his track coach Bill Bowerman realized the need for a good running shoe. The leading track shoes of the time were being produced by European companies, adidas and Puma...

The 1970s
In 1971, Knight and Bowerman decided to develop a distinctive trademark and a new brand name 'Nike', inspired by the Greek winged Goddess of Victory...

The 1980s
In the early 1980s, Nike replaced adidas as the leading athletic shoe company in the American market. When Nike went public, Knight became one of the richest men in the world. But in the mid-1980s, after five years of rapid growth at an annual rate of 44%, Nike failed to anticipate the emerging market for aerobic shoes, having concentrated its efforts on casual shoes...

Recent History
In the 1990s, Nike made more acquisitions including Tetra Plastic Inc., (1991) and Sports Specialties Inc (1993). Tetra manufactured plastic film used in the manufacture of Nike's Air-sole cushioning components. Sports Specialties distributed licensed headwear...

The Crisis and Restructuring

Knight, who had detached himself from Nike in order to travel and pursue other interests, joined the company back in 1999 after Bowerman's death, at a time when Nike was struggling. While addressing employees at a meeting, Knight admitted that there had been a management failure. Knight put together a new executive team that comprised partly a few Nike's veterans who carried the heritage and culture of Nike's early years, and some outsiders. The new executive team sent out signals that the time had come to solve all the problems...

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