Last updated on February 25th, 2024
One of the most legendary collaborations in the history of sports marketing has come to a close. As Nike considers the possibility of closing their entire golf division, speculation has arisen that they would cut their relationship with their most prominent brand ambassadors.
Over the course of almost thirty years, Nike and Tiger Woods have been instrumental in transforming the way golf is perceived. Once considered a pastime reserved for the privileged elite, the sport has now become accessible to people of all ages and genders, and Tiger's influence has played a significant role in breaking down barriers. Back in 1996, Woods entered into a partnership with Nike, sealing a multi-year agreement that was rumored to be valued at approximately $40 million. In 2013, he further solidified his connection with the brand by signing a highly profitable ten-year extension, worth a staggering $100 million.
Nike has remained a steadfast companion to Tiger, supporting him through the ups and downs of both his professional and personal journeys. Who can forget the captivating image of Tiger skillfully balancing a golf ball on his iron, effortlessly launching it into the distance? Equally unforgettable is the poignant advertisement that featured the voice of his father, Earl, speaking with unwavering sincerity. This powerful ad emerged during a time when the tumultuous events of Tiger's personal life were thrust into the spotlight, capturing the attention of the world.
In 2016, Nike made the decision to withdraw from the golf industry by discontinuing its equipment division. Facing tough competition from well-established brands, Nike chose to focus on its core products, namely shoes and apparel. While it seems that Nike will continue to offer lifestyle-inspired golf shoes such as the Air Jordan 1 Golf and other Jordan Retro-inspired models, it is probable that the performance-oriented Vapor line will be discontinued.