Nike's number of sold-out products spiked after Kaepernick ad: Report

Nike has seen a major uptick in sold-out products in the days after it announced plans to feature NFL free agent Colin Kaepernick in a major marketing campaign, according to a report Wednesday.

The apparel giant’s number of sold-out products increased 61 percent from Sept. 3 to Sept. 13, the 10-day period that included Nike’s Labor Day announcement about Kaepernick’s inclusion in the campaign, compared to the previous 10 days before the announcement, according to research by Thomson Reuters. The brand’s Kaepernick women’s jersey sold out on Sept. 17.

“These strong statistics reinforce the notion that Nike is standing firm – and not just in a social context,” said Jharonne Martis, Thomson Reuters’ director of consumer research.

The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, best known for starting player protests during the national anthem, stars in ads commemorating the 30th anniversary of the “Just Do It” slogan. His inclusion in the campaign drew a mixed reaction on social media, including a public rebuke from President Donald Trump, who opposes anthem protests.

Nike shares initially dropped after the campaign was announced, but have since rebounded to touch all-time highs. The stock fell about 1 percent in trading Wednesday.

Kaepernick is currently suing the NFL, alleging that the league’s 32 owners conspired to keep him off the field. He has not appeared in an NFL game since the 2016 season.