Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences

AUAS students win international Nike Business Challenge

25 Jun 2021 12:55 | Faculty Sports and Nutrition

In January AUAS students Julia Richardson, Katharin Bammann, Malik Hoveling and Michelize van Heerden from the programme Sport Studies-track ISMB took part in the Nike Business Challenge. And with success! During the challenge, the four students proved that they were innovative, creative and efficient. Nike judge Andrea: “Every week the students showed that they had an innovative mindset. Their concept was crystal clear and they fully understood the Nike consumer. In addition, they integrated their mentor’s feedback well and stayed close to Nike's core values.” Their prize? A final interview for an internship at Nike.

The first phase of the challenge started in January. During this period, the student’s assignment was to find a way to increase Nike's digital sales. They had three main ideas: shoe tracking, an augmented reality shop window and a new warehouse. They only had 5 minutes to pitch their ideas, but that motivated them to make the most of it. And that effort paid off. Afterwards, the students heard that they went to the finale. Yay!

Challenge of the finale

The challenge of the finale was to come up with a way for Nike to re-enter the cycling market. The students split the challenge into three phases: pre-launch, launch and post-launch. Even before the pre-launch, the group first found out how the market feels about Nike's current cycling sports line. Based on that feedback, they launched clothing collections for specific cities in the Nike Training Club app. Nike judge Andrea adds: “The students thoroughly understood Nike's customers and digital channels, and they also made optimal use of Nike's current assets.”

Innovative mindset

This brings us to the reason why Julia, Katharin, Malik and Michelize were the winners of the Nike Business Challenge. Andrea: “Every week the students showed that they had an innovative mindset. Their concept was crystal clear and they fully understood the Nike consumer. In addition, they integrated their mentor’s feedback well and stayed close to Nike's core values.” The students add that they have also tried to incorporate a sustainability aspect into their ideas and to always think from the customer's point of view. This is fully in line with their innovative mindset.

Internship at Nike

But what did they win? The winners of the challenge won a final interview for an internship at Nike. The application process normally takes a lot longer, so the award is a huge opportunity for the students. Andrea points out that the challenge is also the perfect chance for Nike to involve students in a non-traditional way. On top of that, it was the ideal way for students to showcase their skills before a typical job application. This also allowed the recruiters to get to know the students before entering the application process.

Although Julia, Katharin and Michelize are venturing off into different directions with other opportunities, Malik is very happy that he's been selected for the internship. He can't wait to get started at Nike's European headquarters!