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NIKE Innovation Strategy
Nike is the leading designer, distributor and marketer of authentic footwear, accessories and apparel for wide selection of fitness activities and sports. Nike subsidiaries that are wholly owned include Cole Haan, Converse, Hurley International LLC and Umbo International Limited.

Last 2011, Nike recorded about $20.9 billion revenue. After it many years of phenomenal growth and being world’s top brand, innovation strategy at Nike made a deliberate shift. They have shifted the strategy which where sustainability is integrated as an effective vehicle for its growth. Since they no longer see sustainability as just an option, this is considered as their move of establishing corporate responsibility for the very first time.

For this company, abundance is age is almost over. Business performance definition has significantly expanded as innovations and expectations have been redefined. Nike believes that this world should innovate faster towards growth that will be beneficial for all.

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Innovation strategy at Nike is its core competency. From the time it was founded in 1964 by Bill Bowerman and Phil Knights, it has in continuous search for ways of improving those products that they sell. These founders were not only distributors as they also collaborated on ideas for design. This innovation legacy to look for faster, lighter and better performance has deepened as time passed by.

Their legacy drove innovation strategy at Nike to excel from product designs, production, marketing and distribution. While this business has grown and evolved exponentially, the vision has continued to feed the innovative thinking of business practices till this day.

There were also several events that happened in early 2000 that prompted Nike to shift on its approach and vision. This includes labor crisis in terms of manufacturing and sourcing practice as well as scenario planning wherein the potential vulnerabilities of the business surfaced. The company underwent reorganization in order to closely align with consumers. Within these changes, Nike embedded sustainability on their strategies.

In 1990, the public reaction on labor practices in the factories where the production is sourced triggered strategy innovation at Nike when it comes to overseeing and managing the supply chains. They took responsibility of developing more stringent standards for their manufacturing partnerships.

The company also took measure in sharing information on their expectations and progress as against the strict guidelines of operation. The move was a signal that the company was serious about their desire to quickly find solution to the issue. Their action for more transparency has offered the greatest impact. It has allowed the company to have a better comprehension of the internal problems and shape appropriate solutions.

In the year 2007, innovation strategy at Nike conducted scenario planning on the global trends like health, water, energy and the growing worry concerning climate change. This is not an act about their sustainability strategy but more of their business strategy. With it, they became more aware of their dependence on fossil fuel energy and oil for the materials.

They have realized that the company is also vulnerable to continuous escalation of oil prices as well as carbon restriction from regulations on climate change.

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They realized that use of materials and waste production poses major risks. This has led them to make a long term vision of creating value and sustainable business for the stake holders by the process of decoupling their profitable growth using constrained resources.

The labor crisis, management shift and scenario planning programs were all considered to be pivotal moments for innovation strategy at Nike. Collectively, it has triggered the commitment to integrate sustainability to every aspect of the company.

They have come up with new vision and redefined goals as for this company, there can be no finish lines. This new vision requires innovation on designs, production, sourcing, metrics and tools and the entire team structure. Fortunately, the character of innovation has always been on the cultural DNA of the company which provided them with strong foundation.

Embedding sustainability strategy, educating people and evolving the process takes time, unerring commitment and continuous reassessment. The company is willing to take the challenge.

Innovation strategy is at the heart of this great company. The desire and willingness to learn can be considered as the cornerstone of innovation.

While this company learned a lot from their paste experience, their evolution from industrial economy to sustainable economy will be teaching them more lessons as what they have learned before. The evolution required them to innovate radically and faster.

It is an innovation from top to bottom and inside out. Nike envisions of being catalyst of innovations which will deliver superior product performance with low environmental impact in order to drive sustainable and profitable growth for the company. this is end is not to be achieved by few people only, but every person who participates on their system to adopt a different view, approach and sense of purpose on their jobs.

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