SBD/4/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

HAKEEM BRINGS SNEAKERS TO THE MASSES

     Hakeem Olajuwon's new deal with Spaulding is analyzed in the
current issue of INSIDE SPORTS.  Olajuwon could have signed a
lucrative deal with high-profile companies Reebok and Nike, but
"opted to help design a line" with Spaulding that would cost less
than $50/pair.  Spaulding is "not a big player in the realm of
high priced hi-tops but the dominant maker in the mass market --
outlets such as Kmart and Target -- where America buys 38% of its
athletic shoes."  The Olajuwon line will be in stores this fall
and be priced between $35-$45.  But "rival shoe companies no
doubt will snicker over" Olajuwon's venture.  Nike PR Manager Tom
Feuer:  "I doubt very much that Olajuwon's shoes have a Nike kind
of workmanship."  But INSIDE SPORTS' Alex Hecht calls it "a wise
business decision" for Olajuwon.  He gets a "financially
comparable" deal, when "there is no denying that his thick
Nigerian accent has hindered his overall commercial viability."
And because of the mass marketing, price "will be the driving
force" (INSIDE SPORTS, 6/95).
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Related Topics:

Nike, Reebok

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