After an extensive strategic review, Nike has placed Nike Bauer Hockey on the auction block. Acquired by Nike back in 1995 from the Italian Olivieri group, the former Bauer reported sales of only around $160 million last year. It has been growing significantly over the last two years, both in sales and in financial results, but Nike’s management sees opportunities to invest more judiciously in markets that are larger than hockey and offer more growth potential for the company.
The announcement comes as Nike is seeking ways to optimize its resources, amid anxiety over the prospects of the U.S. sports market. The company hopes to conclude the sale of Bauer within the current fiscal year, ending next May 31. It has also launched a review of Exeter Brands, another subsidiary that owns the Starter brand and other properties.
The sale of Nike Bauer Hockey may be somewhat complicated by the new name of the brand. Bauer employees had regarded it as a sign of confidence that Nike affixed its name to that of the hockey brand two years ago, but it will have to be dropped again by the new owners. Nike managers said they would negotiate a transition period with the buyer.