Update: Following speculation of Nike's impending deal with Amazon, the fitness giant's CEO, Mark Parker confirmed Friday that the two are, in fact, teaming up. According to CNN, he said: "We're in the early stages but we really look forward to evaluating the results of the pilot;" by launching a direct partnership, he added, Nike will be able "elevate the way the brand is presented" on Amazon, something it's currently had trouble keeping tabs on, with so many unverified third-party vendors selling its products on the site. Though Parker notes there will be a limited product selection at the beginning, we have a feeling that, given the interest surrounding both Nike and Amazon, there'll be much more to come in the future.
On Wednesday, Goldman Sachs notified its clients that Nike “could be close to commencing a direct relationship selling product on Amazon.com,” Racked reports; when asked for further information regarding the situation, Amazon representatives told Refinery29 they had no comment. If a deal is made, though, Nike will be in good company — competitors like Under Armour and Adidas already have official presences on the site.
Currently, Amazon customers are able to purchase Nike products through third party sellers, which have been known to include counterfeit merchandise. Goldman analysts believe making the jump to a direct product partnership would give Nike more control over how the brand is represented in the Amazon marketplace, as well as some seriously lucrative economic exposure — we're talking $300 million to $500 million more in revenue, a welcome sales jump for Nike, which announced nearly 1,400 layoffs just last week.
This anticipated revenue growth would primarily come from increased access to millennials, who already buy more clothes from Amazon than any other online retailer. That data, compiled by research firm Slice Intelligence, is sure to skyrocket when popular styles, like Nike's Air Force 1s and Converse's Chuck Taylors, are available via Amazon Prime.
On the flip side, the union could be devastating for brick-and-mortar department stores, which are already struggling to compete with online sales. Should Nike choose to exclusively launch new products on Amazon, it's likely that already-struggling IRL retailers, like Foot Locker, simply won't be able to compete.