Outrage Builds As Nike Continues to Stand By Donald Trump, Refuses to Relocated NYC Niketown Store from Trump Tower
Earlier this week, more than 60,000 members of the California-based Courage Campaign renewed their call for Nike to sever ties with Donald Trump’s bigoted brand and relocate its flagship NYC Niketown store to out of Trump Tower when its lease expires in May of 2017.
Courage Campaign’s renewed push comes after a leaked 2005 Access Hollywood video showed Donald Trump bragging about sexually assaulting women and getting away with it and as 10 women have come forward to accuse Trump of sexual assault since that video made news. Despite previous reporting that Nike’s lease on Trump Tower expires in May of 2017, not including three five-year extensions, Nike spokesperson Greg Rossiter told The Oregonian that Nike has a “multiyear-lease agreement. It does not end in 2017.”
In reaction to Nike’s continued refusal to sever ties with Donald Trump, William Winters, Campaign Director for Courage Campaign issued the following statement:
“Despite numerous reports that Nike’s NYC Niketown lease at Trump Tower is set to expire in May of 2017 – Nike continues to do nothing to disassociate itself from Donald Trump’s dangerous, misogynistic and bigoted brand. For a company that boasts about its dedication to diversity and inclusion, this is unacceptable.
“If Nike has chosen to continue their relationship with Donald Trump, and extended its lease at the Trump Tower location – this is all the more unacceptable. Dozens of national brands – including Macy’s, NBC and ESPN – have taken steps to disassociate themselves from Donald Trump. By failing to do the same, Nike is sending a clear signal that they stand by Trump’s disgusting rhetoric, and sexist, racist, and xenophobic brand.
“Nike needs to immediately clarify the terms of their lease agreement with Trump Tower and take active steps to move their flagship Niketown store from Trump’s building – or face a backlash from the millions of American people that Trump has offended in this election.
“This isn’t rocket science, Nike. Just do it.”
Flagship stores like Niketown are crucial for companies, as their strategic placements in prominent cities around the globe generate foot traffic and high volumes of sales, while increasing the brand’s value and reputation through association with similar, or higher valued brands. Nike currently leases the space for NikeTown from Donald Trump valued at $200m. According to Nike, “diversity and inclusion are key levers in continuing to drive its creativity and innovation” and Courage Campaign argues that Trump’s rhetoric and values are inconsistent with Nike’s brand.
Last year, Macy’s cut ties with Donald Trump’s brand after the Republican frontrunner called Mexican immigrants “rapists,” derided and objectified women by calling them “bimbos,” “fat pigs,” and in one case, “ a young and beautiful piece of ass.” Trump has also said that he would stop all Muslims from entering the US and has encouraged violence against protesters at his events, even going so far as to say that protesters should be carried out on a stretcher and volunteering to pay the legal fees of any supporter who was arrested for assaulting a protester.
Earlier this year, Nike immediately dropped Manny Pacquiao for his abhorrent remarks on same-sex couples. It cut ties with Maria Sharapova right away after she announced that she failed a drug test.
How many large prime location storefronts are there in Manhattan? How easy is it to skip to one?
Myself I think we’re watching people who make their living out of getting people outraged. And thus there’s ever more pressure to find something to be outraged about. A whole 60k online signatures, eh? To drive a $200 million store relocation?