Nike took a risk when it released a controversial advertising campaign featuring former NFL star, and that risk paid off. Nike shares rose , even though some stores and customers boycotted the brand. Now, a Colorado sporting goods store that is closing its doors, in part due to the owner’s boycott.
Prime Time Sports owner Stephen Martin took issue with the Kaepernick ad — which was released in September 2018 — and decided to boycott Nike products in retaliation, according to CBS Denver. Now, the Colorado Springs store is going out of business.
Kaepernick became a polarizing figure when heduring the national anthem at NFL games in 2016. He sparked a movement, and other players started kneeling as a silent protest of police brutality and racial injustice.
Some people, like Martin, were outraged by Nike’s choice to hire Kaepernick. The store owner started selling his Nike products at highly-discounted prices, even though the brand’s products made up 40 to 50 percent of his inventory.
Five months later, the risk he took to boycott Nike did not pay off. “Being a sports store and not having Nike jerseys is kind of like being a milk store without milk or a gas station without gas,” Martin told KKTV. “They have a virtual monopoly on jerseys. There is no other option.”
While the busy holiday shopping season helped the store, that was apparently not enough to keep it alive. Martin announced Monday on Facebook everything inside Prime Time Sports is now 40 percent off and after 21 years, he’s going out of business.
“For everybody that has offered help and support through the “Honor The Flag” memorial wall and NIKE boycott, now is your time to help me liquidate,” he wrote. “Please do your Facebook thing with everyone you know so this can go as quickly as possible.”
Martin had a photo wall of military heroes in the window of his store, which he hopes he is remembered for.