Which is better, Adidas or Nike? Which Retailer Is Winning The Sneaker Battle?
Adidas vs Nike : The worldwide sports shoe industry was valued at $58 billion in 2018 and is expected to reach $88 billion by 2024.
With such a large market, it’s a lucrative market for sports brands, and market share is fiercely contested.
Despite a slew of new entrants into the space market in recent years, such as APL, the market is still dominated by a few heavyweights.
For a long time, Nike and Adidas have been battling it out to be the global champion in sports shoes, and anyone who has read Phil Knights wonderful book, Shoe Dog, knows that the rivalry between the brands is a driving force behind both of their accomplishments.
But, in this never-ending war, who is currently winning? Who is the best trainer on the market?
Let’s begin by comparing the two brands’ revenue. Nike is the larger company overall and the market leader in the worldwide sports footwear industry, with footwear revenues of approximately $24.2 billion in 2018, compared to $15 billion for Adidas.
Not just Nike and Adidas, but also Converse (owned by Nike) and Reebok are included in these figures (owned by Adidas).
Adidas footwear has generated $5.8 billion in revenue during 2015, rising at an annual rate of 17.6%, but Nike footwear has only added $4.3 billion, growing at an average rate of 6.8%.
Price of a Share
Clearly, capitalisation is a determining factor in determining who wins in this market.
Nike’s market value was $140 billion in July 2019, more than double that of Adidas’s $65 billion, demonstrating the size of both companies.
Adidas shares have outperformed the market in 2019, whereas Nike shares have grown in lockstep with the industry.
Factor of Coolness
Adidas appears to be ahead of Nike on this statistic, having chosen a marketing strategy that emphasises streetwear footwear through “cooler” collaborations with musicians and celebrities like Kanye West and Beyonce, as opposed to Nike’s more sports-focused approach.
Adidas is clearly banking that by bringing the athleisure trend from the gym to the office, they will be able to capture even more market share.
Kanye West, who just ranked third on Forbes’ 2019 list of the 100 highest-paid celebrities, is one man who understands more about the Adidas/Nike rivalry than anyone and has made a fortune collaborating with both.
Kanye West’s celebrity status is undeniable: not only is he one of the most well-known (and profitable) rappers of his generation, but he is also one-half of one of the world’s most recognisable couples, thanks to his marriage to Kim Kardashian.
Kanye West tweeted three years ago that he was $53 million in debt, but he now reportedly has an annual pre-tax income of at least $150 million.
His fortune has turned around partly as a result of his creation of a $1 billion fashion empire through his sneaker brand Yeezy.
Initially partnering with Nike to market his Yeezy sneakers, releasing three models over a five-year period, Kanye announced in 2014 that he was doing the unthinkable and switching to Nike’s rivals, Adidas.
The first Adidas Yeezys were released in February 2015, and the collaboration has since become one of the most successful of all time.
By the end of the year, Yeezy sales are expected to reach $1.5 billion, and their popularity shows no signs of decreasing.
Whereas Nike’s main cooperation is with a totally different type of celebrity: veteran basketball star Michael Jordan, whose Air Jordan line of trainers for Nike presently maintains the top rank for celebrity shoe companies, with annual sales of approximately $3 billion.
Because the first Air Jordans were released in 1985, they are now a well-known sneaker brand that can no longer be classified as cool.
Nike is well aware of this, and in 2018, they took steps to combat it by sponsoring Paris Saint-Germain Football Club.
The football team was the first to wear Jordan products, with advertisements focusing on world talents Neymar and Kylian Mbappe!
The competition for footwear supremacy between Nike and Adidas is never-ending, and it is at the heart of both companies’ success, especially as both want to expand their direct-to-consumer ties. Although Nike is the larger company, Adidas is obviously closing the gap through sponsorship and an improved ‘cool’ factor.
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