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January 14, 2010

Nike Introduces the Maria Sharapova Collection

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Tennis star’s grand slam looks now available at retail, online.

BEAVERTON, Ore. (January 15, 2010) – Nike and tennis star Maria Sharapova today announce the introduction of the Maria Sharapova Collection, an innovative line of high-performance tennis dresses and two-piece outfits. For the first time the fashion-forward, on-court looks of the young three-time Grand Slam champion will be available for all women to enjoy.

Throughout the year ahead, Nike will debut seven dresses and a number of tank and skirt combinations which Sharapova will wear on court beginning with the lightweight, two-layer dress she will sport at the 2010 Australian Open.

A digital look book with downloadable content has been created to bring Sharapova’s looks to life, as well as those Australian Open looks for Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Juan Martin Del Porto, Li Na and Serena Williams. The digital look book can be accessed at the following link: http://ozlookbook.nikemedia.com/.

“It’s really incredible to be able to bring these looks that I love to so many women,” said Sharapova. “I am equally excited about working with the design team at Nike to see how much more innovative we can get crossing fashion-forward designs with high performance fabrics and silhouettes.”

Sharapova will share her broader on-court collection with four young, up-and-coming players who will wear the tank and skirt in different color combinations throughout their tournament schedules. Sharapova was integral in selecting the team of players who will compete wearing the Maria Sharapova Collection: Kai-Chen Chang (Taiwan); Julia Goerges (Germany); Anastasia Pivovarova (Russia); Madison Keys (U.S.).

All of the Maria Sharapova Collection looks will be available for purchase online at www.nike.com, as well as at Nike retail and tennis specialty stores around the world.

According to Nike designers, Sharapova is an athlete who’s intimately involved with the design and development of her performance apparel and accessories. She brings a passion for detail and design to each of her collaborations with the Nike design team. Their goal is to strike the perfect balance between aesthetic appeal and flawless performance.

Sharapova’s pinnacle centerpiece for the 2010 Australian Open is a lightweight, two-layer dress that she had actually sketched a year earlier in her personal sketch book. She shared that early sketch with Nike designers who helped her bring the inspiration to life. The dress will be the first in a series of looks throughout 2010 that will launch the Maria Sharapova Collection available at retail for the first time.

The Collection’s first design consists of a solid blue slip dress, made of Dri-Fit fabric, with a printed mesh overlay. The mesh incorporates a watercolor print comprised of blue, green and yellow, a color palette that complements the Melbourne Park courts. The overlay also features a high neckline with ruffled edging. Two rows of elastic accentuate Maria’s waist, criss-crossing at the center back. Overall, the dress is lightweight, breathable and, like Maria, a standout, elegant look on the court.

In addition to Sharapova’s center-court dress designed for the Australian Open, the initial offerings from the Maria Sharapova Collection will include two skirts and two performance tank tops, all built to keep athletes cool while performing at the top of their game.

Both skirts have a double layer with built-in shorts and feature moisture-wicking Nike Dri-FIT performance fabric. One skirt has a Turbo Green top layer with a contrasting Vibrant Yellow base layer while the other skirt features a Cool Mint top layer and a contrasting White base layer.

The performance tops aesthetically complement the skirts, as one design features a dominant color of Vibrant Yellow with a hint of Turbo Green around the straps, while the other piece is predominantly white with Cool Mint accents.

About Nike NIKE, Inc. based near Beaverton, Oregon, is the world's leading designer, marketer and distributor of authentic athletic footwear, apparel, equipment and accessories for a wide variety of sports and fitness activities. Wholly owned Nike subsidiaries include Cole Haan Holdings Incorporated, which designs, markets and distributes luxury shoes, handbags, accessories and coats; Converse Inc., which designs, markets and distributes athletic footwear, apparel and accessories; Hurley International LLC, which designs, markets and distributes action sports and youth lifestyle footwear, apparel and accessories; and Umbro Ltd., a leading United Kingdom-based global football (soccer) brand. For more information, visit www.nikeinc.com.