As the coronavirus continues to plaque businesses worldwide, Nike addressed the crisis directly today in its fiscal 2020 Q3 earnings report. While the company is reluctant to issue guidance for the coming quarter due to the uncertainty around the virus, it had a relatively strong showing in Q3 including what's being touted as the largest launch in company history.
"Our launch of the Air Jordan 11 'Bred' was the largest in our history, with the product selling out in 28 minutes powered by the SNKRS app," newly appointed COO Andy Campion said. Historically, this has been a trend for Jordan Brand's holiday releases, with previous Air Jordan 11s including the "72-10," "Space Jam," and "Concord" setting the benchmark in prior years. While exact numbers are not disclosed by the brand, Air Jordan 11s are often rumored to be produced in excess of one million pairs.
Other product named as growth drivers for Nike Basketball included the LeBron 17, Zoom Freak 1, and NBA City Edition jerseys. Meanwhile, the Running category was bolstered said to be by the Infinity React and energy surrounding the unveiling of the upcoming Alphafly Next%.
With regards to the current pandemic, Nike's new CEO John Donahoe spoke to the brand's shift from its retail stores to an aggressive digital push. The move, which included a swift shuttering of all Nike stores and a push for consumers in the U.S. and Europe to stay home with promotions such as free access to the Nike Training Club Premium workout app, has paid off handsomely. Campion said the brand's online sales have surged by triple digits over the past few days, comparing the numbers to "Holiday peak levels."
The CEO also announced that the brand has been working with the Oregon Health & Science University to create protective equipment including face shields. "We also know that this is a moment in society where the private sector has a major role to play. Companies like Nike need to do our part. So, our teams in innovation and manufacturing are exploring designs for personal protective equipment, or PPE to support doctors, nurses and others on the front line of this outbreak," Donahoe said.
For more on Nike's 2020 Q3 earnings, click here.