The History of Nike Shoes (Skating) – Nike as a Business

The History of Nike Shoes (Skating) - Nike as a Business

In 2014, the mighty sports shoe giant Nike had a very important birthday – it turned 50!

In this article we will be taking a look at the history of Nike shoes, well, Nike skateboarding shoes to be precise!

We thought it was well overdue that we included an article on this fashion powerhouse of a business idea, that keeps on gathering pace…

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history of nike shoes


Nike as a Business


Nike burst onto the scene in 1964 as Blue Ribbon Sports – a business that centered on distributing footwear for Japanese shoemaker Onitsuka Tiger.

Onitsuka Tiger later became the popular sports make Asics.

Blue Ribbon Sports eventually changed it’s name to Nike in 1971.

Nike was originally put together by Bill Bowerman – a track-and-field coach – and Phil Knight, a middle-distance runner from Portland who was enrolled in the University of Oregon.

Bowerman actually constructed the first ever Nike trainer inside his wife’s waffle iron!

The Nike slogan “Just Do It”, that goes with the famous ‘swoosh’, was actually inspired by a serial killer named Gary Gilmore – he apparently said something similar as he stood in front of the firing squad, that ended his life!

The first campaign that included the famous “Just Do It” slogan was in 1988.

Ilie Nastase, the famous (and talented yet temperamental) tennis player from Bucharest was the first ever sports person to sign up with Nike in 1972.

Interesting fact – did you know that the largest Nike store in the world is not found in the US of A?

It’s actually found on London’s Oxford Street – the 42,000 feet store cost over 10 million dollars to build!


We hope you enjoyed the article on this sports powerhouse of a business. Over the coming months we will be trying to cover as many business success stories as possible – there’s nothing like a bit of inspiration to get your working day in gear!

If you have any problems with the size of the text on the infographic, simply click on it and you will be taken to a separate tab (which includes a magnifying tool!).

If you have any thoughts or opinions on the subject we have covered here today – please leave them in the comment section below.

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