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The sports apparel giant is utilizing a six-step procedure to determine when specific Nike store locations can reopen, according to the company’s website. Nike stores will feature revised operating procedures to protect public health, including social distancing, limits on store traffic and frequent sanitizations. Employees will be provided with face masks.
“We remain focused on prioritizing the health of our teammates and consumers and continue to follow the advice and direction of local health authorities and governments,” Nike said in a press release last Thursday.
The sports apparel giant shuttered all stores in the U.S. and Canada on March 15 as locations around the country shut down nonessential businesses and states issued shelter-in-place orders. As of May 14, only 5 percent of Nike retail locations in North America had reopened with reduced hours.
While Nike has experienced a surge in digital sales since the pandemic began, the store closures are expected to put a significant dent in its fourth-quarter earnings. The company warned that it expects a “material impact” to results.
Aside from the safety measures, Nike stores are expected to reopen with an increased emphasis on digital technology, including in-store use of the Nike app to facilitate contactless transactions.
Nike executives expressed optimism about the company’s recovery from the shutdown, noting that corporate-owned stores in Greater China and South Korea have reopened following closures earlier this year.
“We are encouraged by the recovery we are seeing in Greater China and South Korea as we continue to deepen our connection to consumers,” Nike CEO John Donahoe said in a statement. “Even more so, consumers around the world are recognizing the need for an active and healthy lifestyle and sport is now more meaningful than ever.
Nike said the U.S. was one of more than 15 countries in which store reopenings have begun. Other locales include Germany, France and Brazil.