Just did it: Nike cuts ties with Lance's Livestrong
Nike, which helped build Lance Armstrong's Livestrong cancer charity into a global brand and introduced its familiar yellow wristband, is cutting ties with the foundation in the latest fallout from the former cyclist's doping scandal.
The move by the sports shoe and clothing company ends a relationship that began in 2004 and helped the foundation raise more than $100m (€78m), making the charity's bracelet an international symbol for cancer survivors.
But the relationship soured with revelations of performance-enhancing drug use by Armstrong and members of his US Postal Service team.
Nike said yesterday it will stop making its Livestrong line of apparel after this year. Foundation and company officials said Nike will honour the financial terms of its contract until it expires in 2014.
Nike dropped its personal sponsorship of Armstrong last October after US Anti-Doping Agency exposed the team doping programme and portrayed Armstrong as its ringleader. And after years of denials, Armstrong admitted earlier this year he used performance-enhancing drugs to win the Tour de France seven times.
Officials at Livestrong said the foundation remained strong and committed to helping cancer patients worldwide through its survivorship programmes.
Armstrong declined to comment.