Seeing the future as more direct to customer and under its control, Nike has decided to stop selling on Amazon’s marketplace after a two-year experiment, CNBC is reporting.
“As part of Nike’s focus on elevating consumer experiences through more direct, personal relationships, we have made the decision to complete our current pilot with Amazon Retail,” a Nike spokeswoman told CNBC in a statement. “We will continue to invest in strong, distinctive partnerships for Nike with other retailers and platforms to seamlessly serve our consumers globally.”
Nike’s partnership with Amazon surprised many in the industry in 2017, as the company had been highly successful through its online, retail and DTC channels, and there is always a concern about loss of brand control when dealing with the ecommerce giant. Major brands selling through an Amazon partnership include Calvin Klein, J. Crew and Chico’s.
“In the U.S., we’re executing a new pilot with Amazon with a limited Nike product assortment,” Nike Chairman, President and CEO Mark Parker said at the time. “As we do with all of our partners, we’re looking for ways to improve the Nike consumer experience on Amazon by elevating the way the brand is presented and increasing the quality of product storytelling.”
The news follows shortly after Nike’s hiring of board member John Donahoe, chairman of PayPal and former CEO of eBay, as its new president and CEO, effective Jan. 13. He will replace Parker, who had been at the helm of Nike since 2016 and will stay on as executive chairman. The move signals Nike’s increased interest in and focus on ecommerce.
About 30% of Nike’s sales come from DTC, hitting $11.8 billion in 2018, with ecommerce sales increasing by 35%.
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