Nike stocks drop 2.9% in wake of Kaepernick deal
The move prompted immediate calls for boycotts.
Nike's business model appears to have suffered at the hands of controversy as stocks have dropped by over 2% following the introduction of NFL player Colin Kaepernick as a face of the brand.
Kaepernick – who famously chose to kneel during the playing of the American national anthem in protest against police brutality and racial injustice – has divided opinions as of late with two schools of thought deriving from the player's peaceful protest.
One believes that the quarterback is showing mass disrespect to the flag, while the other commends him for his tremendous commitment to black rights.
While, at one stage, the player's kneel was perceived as Kaepernick protesting against the anthem itself, an interview with NFL Media two years ago clarified his feelings.
"I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of colour," he said.
"To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder."
This triggered a political firestorm in the US, leaving Kaepernick to the point that he is currently without a club in the NFL.
Following the unveiling of the new ad, it's understood that Nike fell 2.9% on the Dow Jones to $79.78 (€68.93) in mid-morning trading.
This matters as Nike has already been losing ground to rival Adidas, with investors fearing that the company's decision to feature the controversial NFL star might make things worse.
The company is already facing backlash on Twitter — with some customers posting videos of burning their Nike products.
Nike ran the numbers. They’ll be ok. But please, burn your socks.
— Zach Braff (@zachbraff) September 4, 2018
First the @NFL forces me to choose between my favorite sport and my country. I chose country. Then @Nike forces me to choose between my favorite shoes and my country. Since when did the American Flag and the National Anthem become offensive? pic.twitter.com/4CVQdTHUH4
— Sean Clancy (@sclancy79) September 3, 2018
Nike (NKE) @Nike stock price down more than triple broader markets. Keep pummeling it. Burn any purchased products you own, dump nike stock, make them pay for supporting a traitor. pic.twitter.com/wSnno518KR
— Lee Jackson ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ (@Stonewall_77) September 4, 2018
Just last week, Kaepernick scored a legal victory in his grievance against the NFL when it was proven that owners of the 32 teams conspired to keep him out of the league as a direct result of his protests.