Nike has cut its ties with Amazon, ending a two-year partnership that saw sneakers and apparel entering the latter’s online marketplace.
The announcement is a result of Nike’s changing retail strategy which plans to follow a more direct-to-consumer approach. Last month, this move led to a decision to halt supply and distribution to select independent retailers by 2021. While consumers worry that other brands will follow in Nike’s footsteps, Amazon is supposedly recruiting new third-party vendors to ensure the availability of Nike products, as reported by Bloomberg News.
Nike will continue to use Amazon Web Services, the company’s cloud-computing unit, to run its apps and website services. In 2017, Nike’s pilot partnership with Amazon was established to combat the fake sneakers that were being sold by the e-commerce site’s third-party sellers, an issue that plagues many major brands selling products on Amazon. Amazon’s brand registry program also aimed to offer Nike more data on their customers and control over items that were listed, but third-party sellers spawned just as quickly as they were removed.
Amazon has been implementing changes that address the flow of counterfeits through a recent project allowing brands to attach unique codes to their products for buyers to identify fakes. Despite the company’s continued success in diversifying their portfolio, Nike’s leave will potentially increase the concerns of other sizable brands that partner with Amazon.