Nike Inc.

U.S. sportswear company.

It was founded in 1964 as Blue Ribbon Sports by Bill Bowerman (b. 1911), a track-and-field coach at the University of Oregon, and his former student Phil Knight (b. 1938). They opened their first retail outlet in 1966, launched the Nike brand shoe in 1972, and renamed the company Nike Inc. in 1978. In 1979 it claimed 50% of the U.S. running shoe market. In 1980 the company went public. Part of Nike's success is owed to endorsements by such athletes as John McEnroe, Michael Jordan, and Mia Hamm. In the 1990s the company suffered from revelations about conditions in its overseas factories, but it remained a top producer of athletic shoes and clothing.

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Universalium. 2010.

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