Nike Logo : History, Meaning & Free PNG

Nike achieved a turnover of 46.71 billion dollars in 2022 and has established itself as the leading sportswear brand in the world. Today he is a strong competitor in the fashion sector.

Its logo is one of the most distinctive symbols in the world. From athletes to fashionistas, everyone knows the iconic swoosh

But have you ever wondered about the history of this logo? How did it appear? What does it represent? And how has it evolved over time?

In this article, we will delve into the history of the Nike logo. We will explore its origins and the history of its conception.

We’ll also look at the various changes that have been made to the logo over the years, and what these changes mean for the Nike brand.

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Source : britannica

The history of the Nike brand

Nike is one of the largest producers of sports equipment, footwear and clothing globally. The creators of the Nike brand met in 1957 at the University of Oregon.

Bill Bauerman, track and field coach, and Phil Knight, freshman middle-distance runner. In 1962, the student went to Japan, where he signed a contract to import Tiger sneakers to the United States.

Knight comes up with the name of the company he represents, Blue Ribbon Sports. In 1963, the first delivery of 300 sneakers from Japan went on sale. Phil uses his parents’ laundry as storage.

In 1964, Knight invited Bill Bauermann to collaborate in a full partnership. After a year, the business began to grow.

Jeff Johnson, Knight’s former college rival, becomes Blue Ribbon Sports’ first full-time employee.

In 1971, the founder of Nike was still working at the university to increase the revenue Blue Ribbon Sports generated. There he meets student Caroline Davidson, who creates the famous Nike “swoosh” for just $35.

The Nike logo: Its evolution since its creation

With a 50-year heritage, the Nike Swoosh is one of the most identifiable logos. Just seeing this symbol instantly brings to mind images of Nike products.

However, this is not the only significant emblem of the company. There are more than a dozen symbols in Nike’s extensive collection.

Several logos in Nike’s portfolio have been created for specific sneakers, athletes, partnerships and occasions. For example, the famous image of the Jumpman or the catchphrase “Just Do It”.

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Source : peakpx

Although Nike sneakers have become synonymous with the brand’s iconic logo, the shoes did not originally bear this emblem.

The emblem debuted on football cleats in 1971 before spreading to other equipment.

An often overlooked detail from the early days is that the Nike logo was originally designed in red and white, rather than black, which is more commonly associated with the brand today.

The brand’s creators believed that the color red highlighted the values ​​they associated with Nike’s mission and symbol, namely energy, strength, speed and enthusiasm. White, on the other hand, continues to represent honesty and loyalty.

To create a more powerful and versatile logo, its color palette was changed to a basic, minimalist black and white.

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Source : thesolesupplier

The Nike logo: Origin and meaning

The idea to change the name from Blue Ribbon Sports to Nike came from the company’s very first employee, Jess Johnson.

The brand’s iconic logo, the Swoosh, had already been designed by Carolyn Davidson, a student at the University of Portland, but the company still did not have a name.

Taking inspiration from the Swoosh design, Jess Johnson came up with the name Nike, after the Greek goddess of victory. The iconic Nike Swoosh, one of the most popular and successful logos created in the 20th century.

Although the Swoosh can appear in a variety of colors, its design still exudes a sleek, sturdy, and imposing aesthetic. This symbol stands for movement and speed.

The correct pronunciation of the brand name is “naiki”, which embodies the idea of ​​speed and triumph that the company’s shoes can bring.

This aligns with Nike’s commitment to providing high-performance products that enable users to achieve victory.

In addition, after its connotation, the Nike brand name has the advantage of being brief and easy to remember. It is also easy to adopt internationally.

The Nike logo: from 1964 to today

The Nike logo is a universal brand signature that incorporates originality and elegance. Over the years since its creation, the soul of the Nike logo has been reincarnated in the new ones that followed it. Here are the Nike logos since 1964:

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Source : logos-world

The 1964 – 1971 Nike logo

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Source : 1000logos

Initially, the company logo featured its original name, “Blue Ribbon Sports”, with the text placed below the interlaced letters “BRS”.

Although it is only three letters and drawn in black and white, the stripes and distinctive shape of the logo give the letters a unique look. The first “B” is separated from the other two letters, its upper part covering the left side of the “R”.

Simultaneously, the “R” merged into the “S”, which also overlapped it, but to the right. Therefore, the underlining was kept simple, with an italicized capital letter in a basic sans-serif font.

The Nike logo from 1971 – present


Source : 1000logos

The brand’s most famous symbol is the “Swoosh”, a rounded shell with pointed ends created in 1971.

The 1971 – 1978 Nike logo

Nike Logo 1971 500x281 1

Source : 1000logos 

In 1971, the icon was white – it was distinguished only by its black outline. It was topped with the Nike inscription in italics.

The Nike logo from 1978 – present

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Source : 1000logos

In 1978, designers moved the word up, capitalized the letters, and used the Futura Bold font.

The final version of the brand’s logo was presented in 1995. The developers took the path of minimalism, removing the inscription and geometric shape.

The different collaborations of the Nike brand

Throughout its history, Nike has not only developed its own collections, but also collaborated with many professional sports celebrities.

Currently, the famous brand has more than a dozen collaborations, each with a unique visual identity.

En 1985: Jordan Wings

1985 Jordan Wings

Source : 1000logos

The Jordan Wings emblem debuted in 1985, coinciding with Michael Jordan’s introduction of the black and red Air Jordan 1 sneakers.

And 1988: Jumpman

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Source : 1000logos

The iconic Jumpman logo, which remains visible on the brand’s products to this day, was originally introduced on Air Jordan 3 sneakers in 1988, with the first two models in the series featuring the Jordan Wings logo.

Peter Moore really liked Nike’s poster of Michael Jordan rising through the air with a basketball in his left hand, which he later incorporated into the logo.

En 1989: Bo Jackson

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Source : 1000logos

In 1989, Nike created a brand for retired professional baseball and football player Bo Jackson. The company launched a series of “Bo knows” videos featuring the athlete and introduced a logo featuring a capital “O” and a capital “B”.

In 1991: Challenge Court


Source : 1000logos

In 1990, Nike launched a tennis collection called Challenge Court for Andre Agassi for the following season. The clothing worn by the young player in 1991 was designed by Tim Andric, who said the logo was created entirely by chance.

Using a hair pen that was popular at the time, Tim drew on the paper and accidentally splattered the ink to form a spot resembling a tennis ball.

In 1993: Diamond Turf

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Source : logos-marques

Deion Sanders had a clothing line called Diamond Turf, available from 1993 to 1998, and he always wore Nike products during his career as a professional football and baseball player.

For his best performances during these years, Nike therefore decided to create a new logo to pay tribute to him. This logo, placed on the tongue of the sneakers, represented the two sports played by Sanders and included a goal post as well as the athlete’s playing numbers, 24 and 21.

In 1994: Charles Barkley

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Source : 1000logos

Nike recruited Charles Barkley for his strong, impactful style, leading to the launch of the basketball player’s line in 1994.

Donna Campa designed the logo for Charles Barkley’s line, which combines the silhouette of the basketball player with the initials “CB” and the number 34 on each side.

In 1995: 1 cent

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Source : 1000logos

For several years, the iconic products of basketball player Anfernee Hardaway, also known as “The Penny”, have carried the 1 Cent brand which was introduced in 1995.

The logo’s colors were coordinated with those of the Orlando Magic team, for which the athlete played.

And 1998: Swingman

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Source : 1000logos

In 1998, a line of clothing and shoes for baseball player Ken Griffey Jr. was launched, featuring the Swingman logo, designed by Kevin Plath. The logo represented an energetic and vibrant image of the athlete.

Although Ken’s stance may be similar to that of any other baseball player, it is his backwards cap (a signature style of Griffey Jr.) that sets him apart from the rest.

And 2003: Tiger Woods

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Source : 1000logos

In 2003, Nike collaborated with Tiger Woods to launch a new golf clothing and footwear division, whose logo consisted of the athlete’s initials.

In 2003: Lebron James

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Source : 1000logos

In 2003, LeBron James’ first logo was unveiled, featuring the athlete’s initials and jersey number. Subsequently, all other logos, such as crowns or lions, revolve around the theme of the king of basketball.

In 2004: Carmelo Anthony

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Source : 1000logos

Recognized as one of the best players in the NBA, Carmelo Anthony received his own Air Melo line in 2004 from Jordan Brand. This line included the first Jordan Carmelo 1.5 sneakers, with simple Carmelo branding on the heel.

The Jordan Melo M3, released two years later, featured the later “M” logo on its sole.

In 2005: Serena Williams

En 2005 : Serena Williams

Source : 1000logos

Mark Smith designed the logo for famous American tennis player Serena Williams in 2005. The iconic SW symbol became the trademark of the tennis star’s product line, which is named after the multiple Grand champion Slam.

One 2006 : Kobe Bryant

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Source : 1000logos

In 2006, Kobe Bryant’s first logo featured his signature. However, later in the year a new emblem was designed by Tom Ludecke and Tinker Hatfield, which is still used today.

This distinct symbol consists of overlapping letters “K” in an unconventional arrangement.

Icons, font and color

Today, the term “swoosh”, which is the name of the Nike logo, represents a continuous and incessant movement. The ticking clock, associated with the slogan “Just do it”, was designed to encourage athletes to act, to accomplish new feats.

Among the various brands, Nike is one of the few companies whose logo has an exclusive title and is not linked to any other entity. The Swoosh emblem is increasingly recognized by consumers and athletes, making it a symbol of its own.

It can be seen not only on sports shoes, but also on all of the brand’s products. When it comes to the online symbol, it usually features a minimalist and modern design with a monochrome color palette.

The black Swoosh is often displayed on a white background, while a sleek white Swoosh is placed on a black square with rounded corners.

Nike icon
Icônes, police et couleur
Icônes, police et couleur

Source : 1000logos

The Nike logo has been an integral part of the company name for over two decades. Typically, it was written in block letters with the Futura Bold font.

This minimalist character had a direct and energetic feel, which aligned well with the company’s core values.

Although other colors are sometimes visible, the dark red hue that was introduced to the logo in 1985 is still present. However, the black and white version is usually the official standard.

Icônes, police et couleur

Source : 1000logos

In summary

All in all, the Nike logo has undergone several transformations since its creation in 1971. The Swoosh emblem, designed by Carolyn Davidson, is today synonymous with the brand’s identity and has become one of the most recognized logos in the world. world.

Over the years, Nike has incorporated various design elements, including colors and typography, to enhance the appeal of its logo while maintaining its minimalist and modern aesthetic.Through its innovative designs and marketing strategies, Nike remains a leader in the sportswear industry, and its iconic logo remains an important part of the brand’s identity. Do you also aspire to create a strong brand, like Phil Knight did in his time? So learn the basics of a brand’s visual identity here.

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