Nike Suspended Its Endorsement Contract With Oscar Pistorius

Oscar Pistorius Reeva SteenkampOscar Pistorius and Reeva Steenkamp

Photo: AP

The sportswear company announced the decision through its agency in South Africa.”Nike has suspended its contract with Oscar Pistorius,” Nike SA

communications manager Seruscka Naidoo said in a statement.

Pistorius is understood to have been in receipt of almost US 2 million dollars (1.3 million pounds) a year overall in sponsorship, with the Nike deal worth hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Nike, which described Pistorius in an advertisement in 2011 as the “bullet in the chamber” added on Thursday that they “will monitor his case closely”.

On Monday, Nike had made it public through the Associated Press news agency that they had no further plans to use Pistorius in future campaigns.

Pistorius is the latest in a succession of athletes dropped by the footwear giants – such as Lance Armstrong, Tiger Woods and Marion Jones – after their public profiles did not reflect their private lives.

On Wednesday, Pistorius was cut from an advertising campaign for French cosmetics company Clarins. “Out of respect and compassion for the families implicated in this tragedy, Thierry Mugler Perfumes has taken the decision to withdraw all its campaigns with Oscar Pistorius,” the group said.

Pistorius had been the ambassador of Mugler A*Men Fragrance since 2011.

They had described the man accused of murder as “Part man, part god and unchained by the conventional codes of seduction, he is defined by his interior strength and his desire to conquer … Oscar Pistorius possesses the masculine values which Thierry Mugler holds so dear.”

Sunglasses company Oakley is among those which have distanced themselves from him since he was charged.

M-Net Movies also pulled its “Every night is Oscar night” campaign “out of respect and sympathy to the bereaved”.

BT, for whom Pistorius is a brand ambassador, have not yet made a public statement about their ongoing relationship, other than to allow the murder trial to take its course. The third day of Pistorius’s bail application is being held in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court.

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