Nike has dabbled with Swoosh-branded cycling shoes and apparel over the years, but now the footwear giant has jumped into city bikes, sponsoring a bike share program in Portland, Oregon, to the tune of $10 million over five years. The plan is to produce and provide 1,000 bikes branded “BIKETOWN” for point-to-point use in the Pacific Northwest city.
Similar to London’s “Boris bikes” (named after the mayor who championed the bike-share program), the BIKETOWN bikes will be available for a small fee at a number of stations around Portland.
The US currently has more than 60 cities with a bike-share program.
Nike will paint the BIKETOWN bikes with the company’s signature orange, a color that has been been on Nike’s shoeboxes since 1971. The baskets on the front of the bikes are even designed to look like shoeboxes.
Beyond corporate branding, Nike claims that the orange also serves a safety purpose, along with the reflective gray tape and logos.
Additionally, limited-edition bike-wrap designs will be released periodically.