Nike Is Awarded NFL Apparel License for 2012, Ending Reebok's 12-Year Run

Nike Inc., the world’s largest sporting-goods maker, won the license to make National Football League-branded apparel and uniforms, replacing Reebok.

NFL owners approved a licensing deal with Nike that will begin in 2012, the league said in an e-mailed statement today. Reebok, which was acquired by Adidas AG in 2006, has held the license since 2001.

Reebok’s NFL license represents about $350 million of its $565 million in U.S. apparel revenue, Kate McShane, an analyst at Citigroup Inc. in New York, wrote in a note to investors yesterday. The license may boost Nike’s earnings per share by as much as 3 percent in 2012, said McShane, who is based in New York and has a “buy” rating on the shares.

Nike had the resources and is willing to pay for it, Chris Svezia, an analyst for Susquehanna Financial Group in New York, said in an interview. “Is it game-changing for them? No. $300 million to $500 million is 2 percent to 3 percent of global revenue. That’s small.” Svezia has a “neutral” rating on the shares.

Nike, based in Beaverton, Oregon, rose 27 cents to $82.25 at 11:34 a.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. Adidas, based in Herzogenaurach, Germany, fell 1.3 percent in Frankfurt trading.

“If we lose the NFL it won’t make or break our company,” Adidas Chief Executive Officer Herbert Hainer told CNBC on Sept. 29.

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To contact the editor responsible for this story: Robin Ajello at

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