Nearly two years ago, Kanye West rapped, “Yeezy, Yeezy just jumped over Jumpman”. Well, that statement has come to fruition.
Adidas has officially passed Jordan Brand as the second-most popular sneaker in the U.S., something many thought would never happen.
“I’ve never seen a brand in the sneaker industry grow this fast,” NPD sports industry analyst Matt Powell tells ESPN.
Reports said that from January through August, Adidas nabbed 11.3 percent of the U.S. market share, up from the 6.6 percent the brand had last year. Jordan Brand, however, grew marginally, from 9.4 percent to 9.5 percent year-to-date.
The leader is still Jordan’s parent company Nike, but the Swoosh dropped from 39 percent of the market share to 37 percent for the first eight months of 2017.
In the past few years, Adidas has grown steadily, thanks to its Adidas Originals label, via iconic silhouettes like the Superstar and Stan Smith, as well as the rise of the UltraBOOST line and the introduction of the NMD. Of course, Kanye’s partnership for the Yeezys has contributed as well.
“Kanye is often given credit for the rise, but his product offering is tiny,” Powell says.
Despite Powell’s gripes over credit to Kanye, there’s no denying that he helped move the needle toward Adidas.
As for Jordan Brand, analysts said said Nike’s Jordan label has a “brand problem”.
In a previous Business Insider feature, Morgan Stanley analysts said Jordan’s performance has been “much worse than expected”, as its demand has declined with the downturn in sales of basketball sneakers, in favor of runners, trainers and low-top options like the Superstar for example.
“Nike’s U.S. sales started declining around back-to-school in 2015, and it has been negative ever since,” Powell told ESPN. “You have to believe at some point they’re going to wake up.”
Shares of Adidas are up 31.3 percent over the past year, while shares of Nike are down 3 percent.