Under Armour is on the eleventh moon since signing Stephen Curry. He is a global superstar. Undoubtedly, he is a marketing machine who will generate tremendous revenue through merchandise. Under Armour were on a roll in that timeframe. They signed swashbuckling deals with New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, and golfer Jordan Spieth.
What made Stephen Curry make this change?
In 2013, it seemed like Stephen Curry was on his way to sign a mega-million deal with Nike. But during the pitch meeting, there were several issues encountered by Steph’s father Dell Curry. He said that there were very minute details that were not given attention to by Nike. This decided for Curry very easy. Obviously, Nike failed to spot the potential of the baby faced assassin. Additionally, the obvious failure of thinking he can be the next big thing and money minter for them.
During the pitch meeting in 2013 by Nike, the famed Nike Power Broker Lynn Meritt was absent. Dell later in an interview pointing out that this was the first sign of disinterest by Nike in his son. Also, the pitch from start was nothing a smooth sail. Nike representative continuously addressed Stephen as “Steph-on” throughout the meeting. Understandably, one can mispronounce a name or may have a slip of tongue. But, there was no correction and this went on for the entire meeting.
But, the final nail in the coffin was the next incident. In the PowerPoint presentation, Kevin Durant featured. Presumably, the slide was thereby unknowingly or repurposed materials. “ I paid no heed to the meeting ahead. But I waited for the pitch meeting to end out of respect. But, take my word, it was very hard to keep a poker face.”, said Dell Curry.
What Under Armour proposal pleased the Currys?
By not paying attention to minor details and casually approaching the pitch meeting cost Nike a ton of revenue. Under Armour did what Nike did not want to do and did not do it right. Nike gave company-sponsored camps to the other young budding talents like Cleveland Cavaliers’ Kyrie Irving and New Orleans Pelicans’ Anthony Davis. Steph himself attended the camps of Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul. He knew the value of these camps. He also wanted one on his name. But, Nike refused. Additionally, Dell further stated that
Nike didn’t consider Steph to be on the same level as the Cavs’ LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant and Durant.
Under Armour was willing and eager to give what Nike did not want to. Furthermore, Currys felt respected by Under Armour.
In Nike’s defence, Stephen Curry was young talent and a little unproven at this stage. But, setting the record for most three-pointers was not enough for Nike. If Nike had a chance to a do-over of this incident, they will surely do so. But, they missed their mark and Under Armour pounced. Since then it was all money bags for Under Armour.
Steph went on to become a three-time NBA champion and two time NBA MVP. All that while sporting Under Armour.