Just Do It! A History Of Nike

Did you know that Nike has around 30% of the apparel, footwear, and accessories market share? That is more than any other company in the same industry.

Nike is the largest athletic brand supplier of athletic shoes and apparel in the world. They are in thousands of stores and sell over 900 million items per year.

How did this successful business get its start? Keep reading for a brief history of Nike.

The Founding of Nike

While you probably recognize Nike for its Nike swoosh and “Just Do It” motto, none of that existed in the beginning. Instead of being called Nike, the company was named Blue Ribbon Sports.

Blue Ribbon Sports was founded in 1964 by Bill Bowerman and Phil Knight. Bill Bowerman was a track and field coach at the University of Oregon, while Phil Knight was a student.

Phil Knight loved the idea of making the best possible running shoe, and came into contact with Bill Bowerman. Together, they made the first shoe.

In 1960, Otis Davis wore the first model of running shoes in the 1960’s Olympics, where he won the gold medal in the 400-meter dash. After that, Bill and Phil realized they had a great idea, and the company was born.


A big part of Nike’s business model has always been outsourcing the production of their athletic shoes.

Knight realized that by outsourcing the production, he could make the shoes cheaper than the other athletic shoe brands. Between cheaper costs and good marketing efforts, Nike quickly passed its competitors in sales.

Rebranding to Nike

If Nike was founded as Blue Ribbon Sports, when did it rebrand to Nike? In 1965, Blue Ribbon Sports came up with a new shoe design that had some of the best cushioning yet.

Blue Ribbon Sports began to have a strained relationship with their manufacturer in Japan. The manufacturer came out with their own version of the shoe as a way to undercut Blue Ribbon Sports.

When Blue Ribbon Sports found out, they decided to separate from their outsourced production facility. At this point, they rebranded and became Nike. Knight thought about naming the company Dimension 6 but decided on Nike instead.

Modern Nike

Nike today’s success is due to its marketing efforts. Between the Nike Swoosh and the “Just Do It” motto, everyone recognizes the Nike brand. Nike has created commercials that have won Emmy awards.

Its success is also contributed to its collaborations with athletes and celebrities. They work closely with Tiger Woods, Lebron James, and Kevin Durrant.

Some of Nike’s most popular shoes include the Nike Air Force 1, Nike Air Max, and Nike Jordan.

Now You Know About the History of Nike

Nike is one of the most popular athletic apparel and shoe brand. Their business is successful through outsourcing the production of its shoes and outstanding marketing.

Did you enjoy reading this article about the history of Nike? If so, check out our other articles in the lifestyle article to learn more about cool products and brands.

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