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Back in September, news broke that three senior Nike designers, Denis Dekovic, Mark Miner, and Marc Dolce, were leaving the company to join adidas. It was viewed as a game-changing move, considering the innovations spearheaded by the three top designers during their time at the Swoosh.
But was it a move that went against non-compete agreements each of the designers had signed, while still employed with Nike?
According to Reuters, Nike is suing Dekovic, Miner, and Dolce for allegedly stealing commercial secrets. Nike claims the three designers were consulting with adidas while still employed with the company and believes they pitched adidas an offer to provide the competing brand with Nike's future plans in the running, soccer, and sportswear categories.
In a lawsuit filed in Oregon, Nike is claiming $10 million in damages.
The lawsuit also claims that Dekovic, Miner, and Dolce allegedly copied sensitive design information and documents from their computers, which included an unreleased sneaker made for a sponsored athlete. What's more, the suit claims the designers erased incriminating emails and text messages to hide their tracks.
Nike also accuses adidas of having knowledge about the three designers' non-compete clauses, claiming adidas promised to pay for any legal fees as a result of the fallout.
Denis Dekovic issued the following statement below via his Instagram, which is private.
Sole Collector has also obtained a statement from adidas regarding the lawsuit, which is as follows:
"Known for industry leading innovation and game-changing performance products, we attract top talent from around the world. We offer the most challenging and rewarding opportunities for creatives in our industry. Many of our employees have storied careers and rich experiences, but we have no interest in old work or past assignments as we are focused on shaping the future of the sporting goods industry, not looking at what has been done in the past."