NIKE, Inc. (NKE) is the most popular footwear brand in the world, but Nike is often frowned upon within the running community due to a lack of durability. However, Nike is such a powerful brand that it still holds some sway with runners, including joggers, half-marathoners, and full-marathoners. It’s important not to overlook this market. According to the National Sporting Goods Association, consumers spent $3.2 billion on running shoes last year, which is a 40% increased since 2010. This coincides with the rise of the health-conscious consumer. Those who eat healthy are usually people who exercise.

Nike might be the most popular footwear brand in the world, but Adidas is currently viewed as “in” for everyday wear, and Under Armour, Inc. (UA) is making strides in basketball, betting big on Steph Curry of the Golden State Warriors with the Curry 3. Under Armour’s marketing campaign for the shoe includes a commercial titled, “Make That Old,” which relates to Curry making last season’s NBA Championship loss old news. If Adidas and Under Armour are gaining market share in everyday wear and basketball, respectively, then Nike must hold steady or make gains in other categories. Let’s see how Nike is doing in the running shoe department. (See also, Nike's Futuristic Shoes: All Hype?)

Running USA conducted a survey of 10,000 runners. The market share results on a percentage basis:

Other

29%

Brooks

23%

Asics

18%

Saucony

14%

Nike

9%

New Balance

7%

If you happen to be running in one of this year’s marathons in New York City, Washington D.C., or Philadelphia, look down at what other runners are wearing. You’re not likely to find many Nikes, but you might find plenty of Brooks, which is owned by Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK-B).

It’s often said that getting to the top is easier than staying on top. Nike remains the global leader in footwear, but it must be vigilant in finding ways to retain market share.

NKE has depreciated 20.73% over the past 12 months and currently offers a dividend yield of 1.23%

UA has depreciated 33.98% over the past 12 months.

BRK-B has appreciated 4.39% over the past 12 months.