Nike Escalates StockX Feud, Says Website Is Selling Fake Shoes

Nike Inc. escalated its authorized battle with sneaker market StockX, saying it bought 4 pairs of counterfeit sneakers on the platform.

Nike Inc. escalated its authorized battle with sneaker market StockX, saying it bought 4 pairs of counterfeit sneakers on the platform regardless of the corporate’s guarantees that it is just advertising genuine footwear.

The world’s largest athletic-wear maker requested a federal choose to let it add claims of counterfeiting and false promoting to the present trademark-infringement lawsuit towards StockX. It stated it obtained the pretend sneakers, together with a counterfeit Air Jordan 1 Retro High OG, from {the marketplace} between December and January.

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“Those 4 pairs of counterfeit sneakers have been all bought inside a brief two-month interval on StockX’s platform, all had affixed to them StockX’s ‘Verified Authentic’ hangtag, and all got here with a paper receipt from StockX within the shoe field stating that the situation of the sneakers is ‘100% Authentic,'” Nike said in a court filing Tuesday.

Nike sued StockX in February in federal court in Manhattan, accusing the marketplace of “blatantly freeriding” on Nike’s trademarks and goodwill with a service called Vault NFTs. StockX argued that its NFTs aren’t digital sneakers but simply listings for physical sneakers that are stored in its vault and can be traded by users.

StockX said in a statement Wednesday that it takes customer protection “extraordinarily critically” and has invested millions of dollars to “combat the proliferation of counterfeit merchandise that just about each international market faces right this moment.”

StockX added, “Nike’s latest filing is not only baseless but also is curious given that their own brand protection team has communicated confidence in our authentication program, and that hundreds of Nike employees — including current senior executives — use StockX to buy and sell products.”

Legal scuffles are breaking out over NFTs as they become more mainstream, attracting major brands ranging from Louis Vuitton to Taco Bell. Nike bought virtual sneaker maker RTFKT for an undisclosed sum in December, and launched its own digital shoes last month.

StockX is said to be 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.

The move by Nike “amounts to nothing more than a panicked and desperate attempt to resuscitate its losing legal case against our innovative Vault NFT program that revolutionizes the way that consumers can buy, store, and sell collectibles safely, efficiently, and sustainably,” StockX said. “Nike’s challenge has no merit and clearly demonstrates their lack of understanding of the modern marketplace.”

The case is Nike Inc. v StockX LLC, 22-cv-983, US District Court, Southern District of New York.

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