A Talk With Lebron James Convinced Nike’s Cofounder To Approve The Kaepernick Ad

by MR Magazine Staff

Nike knew it was taking a risk when it put former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick in an ad campaign. The choice was guaranteed to anger a large number of current and potential customers, given that Kaepernick had become such a controversial figure for his decision to kneel during the US national anthem in protest of police shootings of black Americans. Nike had even considered dropping its deal with him. The campaign, though, did get approval from Nike management, and from Nike cofounder Phil Knight. While Knight retired from his role as chairman of the company’s board in 2016, he still holds the title of chairman emeritus, owns a large share of Nike, and has influence over the brand he built into a global powerhouse. Speaking at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business last month, he explained his thinking about the ad, and how a conversation with NBA star and Nike athlete LeBron James helped convince him to back it. Read more at Quartz.