Nike Football Team Sports: Agility as an Engine for Growth

In 2007 Nike EMEA decided to significantly grow Football Team Sports (FTS, people playing football in amateur clubs), which up to then had been a small part of its business. Nike had to face the challenge of how to serve the growing FTS business with a supply chain that traditionally relied on demand generation via marketing. Amateur clubs, on the other hand, would be heavily influenced by the popularity of the professional clubs - or latest results of the Champion's League etc. FTS customers typically needed their uniform before season started. Retailers typically had very limited space and thus could not store the more than 1,000 SKU of the product catalogue. Other key differences between FTS and other apparel categories were the frequency of purchasing (once per year vs all year around), the seasonality (in the summer vs all seasons) and elasticity of price (fairly inelastic vs more elastic). To develop an operations strategy for the FTS business, a team of Nike managers had analyzed the value chain and uncovered some issues that needed to be addressed - eg, a six months lead time or the forecasting method used for FTS sales. Management at EMEA HQ now had to decide how to best meet the aggressive sales target of 40% CAGR for FTS.

Watch case author, Dr Marc Sachon, talking about the key learning objectives of this case.

Case details

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Nike Football Team Sports: Agility as an Engine for Growth
Marc Sachon and Jordan Mitchell
IESE Business School
Ref P-1089-E

About the author

Dr Marc Sachon is Associate Professor of Production, Technology and Operations Management at IESE Business School, University of Navarra, Barcelona, Spain.


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