Shaquille O’Neal is undoubted one of the best centers that will go down in NBA History. His presence was enough to intimidate his opponents. Well, with a built like that who wouldn’t be? Shaq was drafted in 1992 and since then he has been breaking screens (you know the Shaq dunks).
Now Nike and NBA have had a lot of history together, and one of the biggest deals between these two tycoons is Air Jordan. In 119995 Nike offered Michael Jordan a deal, and it just took the fashion industry by storm. Everyone just wanted a pair for themselves. Nike’s marketing strategy is one of the most effective ones: Make limited, make people hungrier, and sell it for more.
Well, the Air Jordan did take the conventional sneaker designs to w whole new level, so let’s give Nike for them. And, considering the popularity of 23 on the court Nike did hit a jackpot. But did Nike invest strenuous time, finance, and manpower in advertising other deals?
Shaquille O’Neal – “Nike didn’t pay attention to the Shaq Brand”
Just like his presence on the court, Shaquille O’Neal was one of the leading players in product endorsements demand by brands. He not only appears in almost every commercial on American Network Channels but also was a favorite for all the Sports Giants.
Shaq is vocal about the things that have happened to him and how he turned it around in his favor. After he was drafted, the sports Brands just rained their deal on Shaq, and though Nike was already leading in the popularity poll still Shaq opted for Reebok.
He said, “Nike was interested, but they didn’t want me to have my own shoe.”
He bombed the meeting Nike by wearing Reebok shoes, and that was enough to give the big sharks the idea. Shaq wanted to sell his shoes at shopping centers like Wal-Mart and Target at an affordable range. This difference eventually led to his deal being not renewed with Reebok.
Shaquille O’Neal went on to create his own brand called the Dunkman and launched it at prices affordable to regular people. Shaq is very invested in doing for and giving to the Community so when a lady told him his shoes were too expensive, he literally took it to heart.
The uncanny difference between the Dunkman and Air Jordan did raise some questions. But when Shaquille O’Neal revealed the brand was owned by Nike at some point, the stark similarity was under stability. Some fans were pretty surprised by this revelation.
He said, “A lot of people say ‘he’s copying’ — I didn’t design that. They designed that, they approved it, they let it go and it got to be hot. Nike owned the Shaq brand at one time but they didn’t pay it any attention, they didn’t want anything to do with it and so they gave it back to me and I grew it to 600 million pairs sold since then.”
Nike’s negligence towards Shaq’s brand gave him the click he needed, and he just turned it into a half a billion-dollar brand and sole over a 100 Million pair of shoes. Now, the stats are enough to shut those mouths who opened to mock Shaq for partnering with Walmart.