By Justin Moore
- Zion Williamson signs with Nike’s Jordan brand for $75M
- The Jordan brand raked in over $2.8B in 2018 alone
Before he’s taken a dribble in the NBA, Duke phenom Zion Williamson has been compared to LeBron James who received a $90 million deal from Nike before his rookie season. Although he didn’t top King James, Zion is still in rare company after joining Nike’s (NKE -2.38%) Jordan brand with a seven year, $75 million sneaker deal. Can Zion help to push the Jordan brand to the next level and increase its declining sales?
Why This Matters: Star pro athletes become household names and major footwear brands like Nike, Adidas (ADDYY -4.28%) and even Puma (PUM.DE -3.52%) are willing to reach into their deep pockets to be a part of pro sports culture. For context, Zion will make more this season off his shoe deal than his rookie contract with the New Orleans Pelicans as the first pick of the 2019 draft.
Zion may be able to increase sales for the Jordan brand if a few notable things happen like, winning Rookie of the Year and being selected to the All-Star team
Speaking of deep pockets, Nike reported earnings of $9.7 billion last quarter alone and in 2018 the Jordan brand brought in $2.9 billion in revenues. However, that number is down from the $3.1 billion the Jordan Brand made in 2017.
Zion may be able to increase sales for the Jordan brand if a few notable things happen like, winning Rookie of the Year and being selected to the All-Star team. When the season kicks off in the fall he’ll be going up against other notable Jordan brand athletes including Russell Westbrook, Jayson Tatum and Chris Paul.
Situational Awareness: For superstar players, their appeal to consumers and footwear companies can prove as lucrative as their on-court abilities. If played properly, can pay long after they take their last dribble. Keep in mind that Michael Jordan hasn’t played professionally since 2003 and his Brand still dominates the retro basketball shoe market with a 65% share in 2017 and Jordan’s cut is around $100 million, per market researcher NPD Group.
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