Nike Rolls Out New Action Sports Product Line With Portland-Based Startup Poler
Nike this week "made its latest push into action sports, rolling out a collection of footwear and apparel with a 2-year-old Portland startup, Poler,” according to Allan Brettman of the Portland OREGONIAN. There is "no business category smaller" at Nike than action sports, as the category "accounted for only" 2% of the $20.8B in Nike brand revenues. But "there's a reason why the world's biggest sports footwear and apparel company has made a bet" on the category through its Hurley surfwear and skatewear subsidiary. Four Poler footwear and four apparel products “were introduced Wednesday” with more “scheduled for rollout later this year.” Poler co-Founder Benji Wagner “knows action sports makes up a relatively small amount of Nike revenue,” but he “takes the long view.” Wagner said, “There are a lot of kids out there surfing, skating and snowboarding who aren't interested in team sports at all. It's millions and millions. It's a huge category that every company is interested in. There’s no reason they wouldn’t be interested.” Wagner added that he and co-Founder Kharma Vella had been talking with Nike skateboarding reps “for about a year before this week’s product release." Brettman notes Nike also is "selling its own line of snow wear as well as snowboarding boots and, along with Hurley, surfing apparel" (Portland OREGONIAN, 10/4).