Nike is embroiled in a doping scandal

“IT DOESN’T MATTER how many people hate your brand as long as enough people love it.” So declared Phil Knight earlier this year in a lecture at Stanford Business School. Companies cannot remain neutral on issues of conscience, even if it means losing some customers. “You have to take a stand on something,” insisted Mr Knight, as Nike, the sportswear firm he dreamed up while studying at Stanford in the 1960s, had done by supporting Colin Kaepernick, an American footballer who refused to stand during the pre-game national anthem in protest against racial injustice.

Woke stuff—and lucrative to boot, if Nike’s financial performance is anything to go by. The company’s revenues rose by 7% in the three months to August, year on year, to $10.7bn. Profits were up by a quarter, as, so far this year, is the share price.

Ironic, then, that Nike must now fend off accusations of distinctly unwoke behaviour. In May it was shamed into undoing a policy of slashing pay for female athletes it sponsors when they get pregnant. An earlier scandal over allegations of sexual harassment and abuse of female workers led to the dismissal of nearly a dozen male executives. And this week Nike has been embroiled in an ugly doping affair, which dragged its share price down by 3%.

On September 30th America’s anti-doping watchdog found Alberto...



via Business Feeds

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