Magazine article Marketing

Spanish Court Stops Nike in Its Tracks

Magazine article Marketing

Spanish Court Stops Nike in Its Tracks

Article excerpt

US Olympic track and field team sponsor Nike is putting a brave face on last week's ruling by a Barcelona court that it cannot market its goods in Spain until a trademark dispute has been cleared up.

It claims that, contrary to several early reports, the injunction does not prevent Nike's clothing from appearing during the games--it is sponsoring five other teams as well as the US athletes. This clothing says Nike, is the athletes' personal property and does not constitute advertising in the eyes of the judge.

And the loss of revenue from sales of Nike apparel--its famous footware is not affected since the disputant is a sock manufacturer--is not seen as a serious blow. "We have planned all along for this," says Nike spokeswoman Liz Dolan. "It's just not that big a deal."

She claims that sales in Spain represented a "miniscule" part of Nike's $600m worldwide clothing sales last year. The setback is more a case of "unrealised potential", since total European sales are rising rapidly--up to $290m in 91. …

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