Remaining in the N° 1 spot in the rankings of Brand Finance, the Swoosh consolidated its position last year as the most valuable brand of clothing, with its value rising by 16 percent to $32.4 billion.

The consultancy said that Nike's progress had been driven by its high-impact marketing strategies at a time when customers look for experiences and emotional connections. It cited as an example its controversial “Dream Crazy” advertisement supporting Colin Kaepernick's stance, despite President Donald Trump's criticism.

Zara came second by far in the rankings, replacing H&M. The third place was taken by Adidas, whose brand value sprung up by 17 percent to reach $16.7 billion. The biggest gain in the ranking was made by Uniqlo, which came in seventh place.

Like Adidas, Nike has been running forceful campaigns lately, including some great videos on women's sports. Its performance image in footwear was somewhat tarnished a few days ago when the shoe worn by one of its sponsored players, Zion Williamson, broke on the basketball court while he was playing for the Duke Blue Devils in a widely watched game against North Carolina. Nike's stock market capitalization fell by only 1.6 percent, however.

It was noted that another champion sponsored by Adidas, Justin Smith, had a similar problem less than one week afterwards when his shoe ripped apart while playing for Indiana against Wisconsin. While the heavier Williamson quit the game with a sprained knee, Smith finished the game with another pair of shoes. He is credited with an unusual level of athleticism, having broken a school record with a 48-inch vertical leap.