Nike Inc. escalated a legal battle with the athletic shoe marketplace StockX, which said it purchased four pairs of fake shoes on the platform.
Nike Inc. has escalated its legal battle with athletic shoe marketplace StockX, saying it purchased four pairs of fake shoes on the platform despite the company’s promise that it only marketed real shoes.
The world’s largest sportswear maker has asked a federal judge to allow it to add allegations of counterfeiting and false advertising to an existing trademark infringement case against StockX. It said it obtained fake shoes, including the fake Air Jordan 1 Retro High OG, from the market between December and January.
“Those four pairs of fake shoes were all purchased in a brief two-month period on StockX’s platform, all affixed to StockX’s ‘Verified Authentic’ hangtag, and all accompanied by a A paper receipt from StockX in the shoe box states the condition Nike said in a court hearing Tuesday.
Nike sued StockX in February in federal court in Manhattan, alleging a “blatantly free” marketplace of trademarks and Nike’s goodwill with a service called Vault NFTs. StockX argues that its NFT is not a digital sneaker but simply a listing for physical sneakers stored in its vault and tradable by users.
StockX said in a statement Wednesday that it takes customer protection “extremely seriously” and has invested millions of dollars to “fight the proliferation of counterfeit products that virtually every market has to offer.” the global arena is facing today.”
StockX added, “Nike’s latest filing is not only baseless but curious as its own brand protection team has conveyed confidence in our authentication program and hundreds of its employees. Nike – including current senior executives – use StockX to buy and sell Cosmetics.”
Legal conflicts are raging on the NFT as they become more popular, attracting major brands from Louis Vuitton to Taco Bell. Nike bought virtual sneaker maker RTFKT for an undisclosed amount in December and launched its own digital shoe last month.
StockX is reportedly planning to go public as alternative assets like sneakers and collectibles have become a hot market for investors. The company said in April 2021 that it was valued at $3.8 billion after a secondary tender offering.
Nike’s move “is nothing more than a panicked and desperate attempt to revive its losing legal case against our innovative Vault NFT program, revolutionizing the way consumers can buy, store and sell collectibles safely, efficiently and sustainably,” said StockX. “Nike’s challenge is worth nothing and clearly demonstrates their lack of understanding of the modern market.”
The case is Nike Inc. v StockX LLC, 22-cv-983, United States District Court, Southern District of New York.