Could Nike Be Running Away From Wieden?

Nike has used other shops for advertising before (i.e, Goodby and Chiat/Day), and they use other agencies for projects and things, but this Adweek article suggests a real big shift may be on the way:

The first piece of business likely to be up for grabs, sources said, is the client’s U.S. running shoe account, currently handled by Wieden + Kennedy.
The Nike rep, Dean Stoyer, would not discuss potential contenders or assignments. But sources said that on Friday Nike informed Wieden, the client’s primary agency for 24 years, that the running shoe account would be put into review. Spending is undisclosed.
Crispin Porter + Bogusky, which has been in talks with Nike for months, is said to be a likely contender for the business. While one source said the account is already headed to the Miami-based MDC Partners shop, the Nike rep said, “No decision is imminent to give a piece of business to any agency.”

Wieden + Kennedy made Nike what it is today. And vice versa. Is this a good move? Bad move? What agencies should (or shouldn’t) try to get the sneaker side of the business?

About Dan Goldgeier

Blogging on AdPulp since 2005, Dan Goldgeier is a Seattle-based freelance copywriter with experience at advertising agencies across the U.S. He is a graduate of the Creative Circus ad school, and currently teaches at Seattle's School of Visual Concepts. In addition, he is a regular columnist for Dan published the best of his columns in a book entitled View From The Cheap Seats: A Broader Look at Advertising, Marketing, Branding, Global Politics, Office Politics, Sexual Politics, and Getting Drunk During a Job Interview. Look for it on Amazon in paperback and e-book editions.


  1. I say that running to Crispin is a big gamble. Big gamble. Seems to be a weird choice, if that choice has been made. Like Volkswagen leaving Arnold. Sure sales were down, but it’s because of crappy vehicles were being made. Taco Bell left Chiat and where are they now? Crappy food and rats eating up your PR budget.

  2. ad-geek executional gripes aside, CPB are still way out in front in terms of cultural reaction-getting. nobody else even comes close. that’s why nike are interested in them. they live or die by that stuff.

  3. Stephanie says:

    I’d be shocked if Nike took all of their work from Wieden. The pair are more of a Portland couple than Columbia and BPN. Both are global companies, but I think they still, to some extent are at least a little bit true to their Portland roots.

  4. CPB = lots of irony and little substance. They are good at mocking the very brands they are paid to promote and getting a lot of PR for themselves and their cool frat boy humor… I would expect Nike to do something more original than hire the flavor of the month.