Nike stock shares and market capitalization plummeted significantly on Tuesday after the athletic titan announced that a controversial former NFL player would be the face of its main advertising campaign.
“Nike just lost about $3.75 billion in market cap after announcing free agent NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick as the new face of its ‘Just Do It’ ad campaign,” according to The Wrap. “It’s the 30th anniversary of the iconic TV and print spots.”
Market capitalization is the value of the shares of a company’s outstanding shares.
“At the time of this writing, the sneaker company’s intra-day market capitalization was $127.82 billion, The Wrap said. “On Friday, that number had been $131.57 billion.”
Shares of Nike stock plummeted nearly 4% Tuesday morning before stabilizing throughout the afternoon.
Kaepernick is at the center of a heated debate regarding respect for the National Anthem. He started a movement of kneeling during the Anthem in 2016 which he says is to raise awareness about maltreatment of black Americans by police. Several players joined Kaepernick in the protest, and some are still kneeling for the Anthem at the beginning of the 2018 NFL season.
The free agent quarterback, who opted out of his contract with the San Francisco 49ers in August of 2016 and has been jobless ever since, announced his lead role as Nike marketer with a Twitter post on Monday.
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) September 3, 2018
Both the protest and the new Nike campaign have drawn stark criticism.
@Nike for elevating @Kaepernick7 to be its face; the bum was good for 1 season. Conservatives buy sneakers too. Support @newbalance @underarmour or @reebok instead. #boycottNike #IStand,” said congressional candidate Antonio Sabato Jr.
— Antonio Sabáto Jr 🇺🇸 (@AntonioSabatoJr) September 4, 2018
— Larry Elder (@larryelder) September 4, 2018
Nike’s competition had a much better day on the market.
Follow Peter D’Abrosca on Twitter: @pdabrosca
ESPN Writer Says ‘F*ck You’ to Josh Hawley for Calling Out the NBA’s Hypocritical Groveling to China
These sports personalities really hate America.
ESPN writer Adrian Wojnarowski wrote “f*ck you” to Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) in response to his letter criticizing the NBA for groveling to China and refusing to support the U.S. military and law enforcement.
Hawley posted the response he received directly from Wojnarowski after issuing a press release on Twitter:
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) July 10, 2020
“On July 3, the National Basketball Association (NBA) came to an agreement with the NBA players union allowing players to wear certain social and political messages on their jerseys, almost all aligned with the message of recent anti-police protests. Conspicuously missing from the list of approved phrases are any in support of the victims of the Communist Chinese Party (CCP), including the people of Hong Kong, whose remaining freedoms are being extinguished by the CCP’s newly-enacted national security law,” Hawley wrote in the letter.
“The league’s new policy suggests a newfound commitment to enhanced employee expression. But that free expression appears to stop at the edge of your corporate sponsors’ sensibilities. And for woke capital today, profits from the Chinese market are more popular than patriotism,” he continued.
“With your new policy, you have crossed the line of sanctioning specific political messages. There is no avoiding the work of clarifying the association’s values now. This is a time for you to make clear what your league believes about human rights and about the nation that is your home. Your silence on these questions speaks volumes,” Hawley added.
The full text of Hawley’s letter can be seen here:
If @NBA is going to put social cause statements on uniforms, why not “Support our Troops” or “Back the Blue”? Or given how much $$ @nba makes in #China, how about “Free Hong Kong”! Today I wrote to Adam Silver to ask for answers pic.twitter.com/PthYR4OxmE
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) July 10, 2020
Big League Politics has reported on ESPN’s bowing to China even while devoting copious amounts of time to anti-American programming on their network:
An internal ESPN memo mandated neutrality when dealing with the China-Hong Kong conflict after National Basketball Association general manager Daryl Morey made a pro-Hong Kong tweet last week that angered the Chinese government, according to a Deadspin report.
Morey, who is the general manager of the Houston Rockets team, wrote a tweet that was published on Oct. 4, saying, “Fight for Freedom. Stand with Hong Kong.” Although he deleted the comment shortly after he posted it, the backlash from China was immediate and severe.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver released a weak statement after the controversy grew, in an obvious attempt not to alienate the Chinese market that they see as a growing revenue stream.
“Over the last three decades, the NBA has developed a great affinity for the people of China. We have seen how basketball can be an important form of people-to-people exchange that deepens ties between the United States and China,” Silver said in his statement.
“At the same time, we recognize that our two countries have different political systems and beliefs. And like many global brands, we bring our business to places with different political systems around the world,” he added.
ESPN, the Disney-owned television network that has helped turn the NBA into a worldwide phenomenon, is taking a similarly pro-China stance regarding the conflict, and it is represented in their programming.
“Daryl Morey, a good man, an exceptional executive, and a conscientious human being, what were you thinking speaking up on this issue?” commentator Stephen A. Smith asked on his ESPN radio show. “It’s about a multitude of people that extends far beyond yourself that you have compromised because you had this insatiable appetite to disseminate a tweet. You don’t know better than that?”
Patriotic Americans built the professional sports industry into a global powerhouse, and now these entities are biting the hand that feeds in pursuit of raw profit.
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