Meet Nike’s new, vibrating, limited edition PlayStation Sneaker, the PG2
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Meet Nike’s new, vibrating, limited edition PlayStation Sneaker, the PG2

Video gaming has emerged in the last few years as the dominant form of entertainment among the under-40s. A hobby that naturally grew up relatively secluded – kids would play video games in their bedrooms, alone or with a couple of friends – has been revealed, by the internet age, as truly ubiquitous: massively multiplayer online role-playing games routinely count their players in the multi-millions, and successful franchises can pull in many billions of dollars. On Youtube, you can find channels where millions of people watch gamers playing in real-time. Is it any surprise that fashionable athletic sneaker giant Nike has taken notice?

Nike’s share price has risen by 9% in the first month of this year

graph 0130 nike

SOURCE: Yahoo Finance

The PG2 is a limited-edition sneaker produced in collaboration with Sony. It’s visually reminiscent of the iconic game console’s controller, with glow-in-the-dark “buttons” in the familiar (to gamers) colour scheme of green, blue, pink and purple. Perhaps most unexpectedly, it shares later iterations of the console controllers’ vibrate function. The “face” of the shoe is Oklahoma City Thunder star Paul George, himself an avid gamer. The shoes will be available worldwide from February 10, and come with a $110 price tag.

This recent collaboration with Sony is the latest in an innovation push. Nike is still the number one player – by a long shot – in its space, but it showed weaknesses last year. Since then, it’s been looking to correct them. That means more sales direct to customers (last year, Nike’s direct to customer channel grew eight times faster than its wholesale business, and accounted for 70% of the brand’s growth). It means pushing forward with new digital efforts (demonstrated by two new apps – SNKRS Stash and Shock Drop). And it means channeling the zeitgeist with bold, interesting, and original collaborations, like the PG2.

Last year, Nike’s CEO Mark Parker said: “retailers who don’t embrace distinction will be left behind.” In 2018, its share price approaching the +10% mark in a single month, the company’s putting its best foot forward.

Disclosure

Dominion holds Nike in its Global Trends Luxury Fund.


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