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Thursday, February 23rd, 2012 at 10:05 am  |  40 responses

Michael Jordan Suing a Chinese Sportswear Company


Michael Jordan filed a lawsuit against a company in China that he alleges illegally used his brand. From the NY Times: “The former basketball star Michael Jordan filed a lawsuit Thursday against Qiaodan Sports, a Chinese sportswear company, for unauthorized use of his Chinese name. In the lawsuit, the former Chicago Bulls guard accused the Chinese company of building a sportswear brand around the name he is known by in China — Qiaodan — as well as using a logo that resembles him playing basketball. Qiaodan also sells merchandise with two other Chinese names that match those of Jordan’s two children, the lawsuit says. Jordan released a statement and a video saying he was suing because he was ‘deeply disappointed to see a company build a business off my Chinese name without my permission, use the number 23 and even attempt to use the names of my children.’ Qiaodan, based in Fujian Province in southern China, had about $270 million in revenue through the first half of last year, and $45 million in profit.”

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  • http://www.boogiewilliams.com Boing Dynasty

    They use his logo to make thier shoes, he uses thier children to make his…

  • Paul H

    Well done Boing. Best comment I have seen on this site In a long time. Mike has some set of balls on him.

  • AD

    i dnt understand how ppl still stand outside in long lines at 3 am to pay 200$ just to look like evrybody else … but we rather critize LBJ smh

  • Kobester

    Boing for the win……….yesssssss!

  • Pais

    @Boing – sure that’s cute, I cracked a smile. But in all seriousness, 45mil in profit? Off yours and your kids image, you’d be ok with that? And regarding western companies taking advantage of cheap foreign labor, you think there’s any regulation at all with the pay and conditions for the people making the knock-offs? You think that company treats it’s employees better than the factories sub-contracted by Nike? At least with Nike there’s an obligation to maintain minimal standards, even if doesn’t compare to western labor laws. Intellectual property has long way to go in that part of the world.

  • Paul H

    @Paris I’m terribly sorry I just find It difficult to sum up much sympathy for a man who has made Hundreds of millions of dollars playing a game. Particularly when that was, In part, facilitated by a company like Nike that has made billions exploiting labour laws In countries like China. What’s good for the goose Is good for the gander.

  • Hulahula

    Interesting if we have some nba kombat between jr smith sister and mj against those chinese guys

  • jake

    Would anyone like a list of companies that exploit overseas workers rights laws? Apple, microsoft, nike, reebok, adidas, fila, hanes, wal mart, jc penny, puma, gap, disney…so unless you make your own shoes I’d say no one should criticize MJ for his business dealings, cause there is a 99 percent chance you have something made by a kid in a factory.

  • Pais

    @Parul – understandable

  • bike

    Qiaodan = His Likeness.

  • ttc

    MJ has people working for him to protect his business interest..I’m sure he knows about all this, but he has other people to deal with this..hard to blame him for this..this happens all the time.. in the business world..u fight for every single penny..it’s not Michael Jordan the person suing, it’s The Jordan brand (I think)..big difference..if they win, money won’t go into his pocket, some of it will, but not all..

  • http://averysmith.org Avery Smith

    A lot of high-brow bball cats on this site (no sarcasm). Glad you guys can separate the fun of the game with the marketing of the shoes. I used to soak up Jordans hook-line and sinker. But then I gained a larger world-view and realized how much of a scam shoes are (mainly Nikes!). Anyway, I appreciate the look of the shoes (they do look good) but learning about their origins, plus EVERYBODY and their grandmother buying them have shifted my tastes. Knock the hustle.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    F*ck Mike. And Pais, the Qiaodan company probably does exploit workers, and so does Nike. Nike’s “minimal standards” are just a way to make people like us feel better without actually doing anything.

  • Paul H

    @Jake. I didn’t say that the average western consumer was not implicit In this. I was just saying that someone could tell me he got screwed out of 99% of his wealth and I wouldn’t blink an eye. Why should your average guy give two f*cks that someone as wealthy as Michael Is losing out on a few bob on the otherside of the world.

  • http://www.twitter.com/_dfrance dfrance21

    Jake is right, people always come at Nike like they are the ONLY company exploit overseas workers. Maybe they’re the most profitable, the most visible, but they’re not alone.

  • @Deknowz

    ::Tips hat:: @Boing.

  • http://slamonline.com The Philosopher

    I thought about going in on the Chinese government. But what I would have said is already known.

  • Paul H

    @DFrance, Everyone knows that there are a plethora of companies who make billions exploiting those who are most vulnerable (Apple being the most recent high profile case), Nike was In the equation because we are talking about MIKE here. And how the guy lacks credibility when talking about how disappointed he Is In the business ethics of others. Nike, and other companies like them, represent corporate scum-excess of the highest order.

  • jake

    @ Paul, I was more saying that Expecting to see tons of anti Nike comments, so it wasn’t really directed at you. And as for the “crappy quality” of Nike products, I used to wear fila,reebok and Adidas, even tried under armour… All of them would wear out in under a year. Meanwhile, my original pair of jordan 3 retros from 2002 are still going strong, minus the loss of tread.Someone is bound to make a quality comment. I’d buy some starbury’s but they are extinct, so I’d rather have $90 dollar j’s than some John Wall reeboks…sorry. One more thing, if you are paying $200 for some sneakers, you’ve been smoking too much kush to make good decisions.

  • Pais

    @Teddy-the-Bear – Say what now? Wow, never had that before, little over the top. It’s nice to know that Chinese shoe makers have a champion but I have a sneaky suspicion you don’t sh!t Teddy Ruxpin. What am I saying that’s so inflammatory? Exploitation ain’t right but it’s a reality, and no one exploits the Chinese more than the Chinese government. You want to come down on MJ for taking exception to people cashing in on his kids? In his place I’m sure you would do the same, and if you didn’t it would make you a punk. Americans damn well better look to protect their business interests against the Chinese in particular for many reasons.

  • Paul H

    Yeah those pesky Chinese just might take that little old world superpower title from you. Paranoia much.

  • That Dude

    The exploitation of chinese workers is totally irrelevant to this story. Can’t blame Mike at all in this case – dudes making money off your name and your kids – can’t have that. This is not the case of poor chinese people trying to make a buck, I can guarantee the owner of Qiaodan is a rich (more than likely corrupt) man who has no qualms about exploiting anyone for profit.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    @ Pais: I said f*ck “MIKE,” I didn’t say “you.” Relax buddy, nothing personal.
    As for your comment about the Chinese government, yes the lax labor laws are bad in China. And which companies profit the most from this? Matter of fact, which people benefit the most from this?
    And I’m not sure what you meant by Mike’s kids. Should I feel sorry for his children now? lol.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Sorry, didn’t read the article. Still, why should I feel sorry for Mike and his children?

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Co-sign Paul H on everything here.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Why do people just assume Qiaodan is a corrupt company? Just because it’s a sportswear brand based in China rather than the United States? Because we all know American companies are SO principled?
    I don’t know about Qiaodan’s labor practices, but I do know that their shoes and clothes are about 10 times less expensive than the average Nike/Jordan item, and actually affordable to most people. Nike actually charges MORE for the same shoes in China than it does in the United States. So yeah, I have no problems with a brand in China distributing more affordable products at the expense of poor victimized Michael freaking Jordan.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    This was inevitable though lol… I knew about this brand since like 2006. I’m surprised it took this long for people to notice, but I guess it wasn’t a big deal. Qiaodan was sold in a lot of places that didn’t even have Nike/Jordan, but now Nike/Jordan are everywhere. Qiaodan doesn’t actually rip Jordan brand’s logo off, unlike most other Nike rip-off brands like “Pike” and “Buke” that have variations of the swoop. Kinda funny actually, haha.

  • http://www.nbafullcourtpressure.com ThisGuy

    MJ wants to sell the Bobcats to Qiaodan…

  • Pais

    The crocodile company, is a Chinese company selling golf shirts with their logo being a mirror (flipped to face the other way) image of the Lacoste crocodile. They also did quite well. Providing similar alternative products at more affordable prices is one thing but profiting off someone else’s brand goes to far. Whether or not the victim is already successful is far from being the point. As it stands Chinese companies can sell their products in your country without fear of being victimized by this kind of illegal practice, while foreign companies can’t access the worlds most populated market for fear of getting their products duplicated and sold cheaper. It amounts to unfair competitive advantage. I see where you’re coming from but it’s a little simple and childish.

  • jake

    I guess more than anything it just makes me mad when people profit from someone elses ideas. If you want a successful businesses, either get your ownlogo and ideas or get the permissionneeded from the person you’re logo jacking.

  • Pais

    ?

  • Pais

    What’s going slam? why can’t I comment?

  • Pais

    My comments aren’t posting…what’s up with that?

  • Pais

    I’m so pissed, I try to retort to @Paul, and it won’t post. I start complaining (without foul language), and after I slight delay those messages post. I think everything is working again and post a variation of my original retort and….nothing. What’s the deal?

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    @ Pais: Why should foreign companies have free access to the world’s most populated market in the first place? Where does this sense of entitlement come from (not you, but the West in general)? You want to talk about FAIRNESS in the world of capitalism? When has Western capitalism ever been fair for pretty much all of Asia (sans Japan), Africa, and Latin America?

  • Pais

    @Paul: Gimme a break, no ones talking about world supremacy. I’m not in the slightest bit paranoid, perhaps you’re a little naive.

  • Pais

    Whether it’s currency manipulation to gain an advantage with their exports or their blatant disregard of intellectual property rights.

  • Pais

    @Teddy – Free market enterprise is the right idea (all opinion here), just because it hasn’t worked in practice doesn’t necessarily mean it’s wrong. Sure the west has pimped the heck out of whoever they could, but time will correct that imbalance as other countries catch up.

  • Pais

    Your killing me Slam. Comments don’t post and then magically appear out of nowhere. My comments are so disjointed at this point that I look like a complete lunatic. And all because I’m so passionate about not letting Paul paint me as conspiracy nut…oh the irony

  • Pais

    @Paul – con’t from 12:33 – Consider that they’re currently running a campaign to remove the dollar as the world reserve currency. And I still haven’t mentioned how much they own in US treasury bonds. Any which way you cut it, international competition between US and China is very real and far from being a conspiracy.

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