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Nobel Foundation Signs Record-Breaking Contract With Nike

Gatorade lost by a narrow bid.

STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN—On Tuesday, Nobel Foundation Board Chairman Carl-Henrik Heldin announced a $300 million partnership with Nike. The deal, Heldin said, will give Nike unprecedented merchandising and naming rights in the world’s most prestigious annual awards process.

“We felt it was time to bring the Nobel Prizes, um, excuse me, the ‘Nobel Prizes: Just Do It,’ into the modern age,” Heldin said. “It won’t compromise the integrity of our selection process, though. The ‘Nike Reax Prize in Chemistry,’ for example, would still have gone to Karplus, Levitt, and Warshul. Higgs and Englert still would have won the ‘Nike Air Jordan Prize in Physics’.”

At the time of the announcement, Nike also rolled out its online Nobel “Literaturewear” marketplace, where shoppers can buy shirts repping their favorite winners of the “Nike Battle of the Books.” Popular slogans include “MUNRO KNOWS,” “GULAG NATION,” “LAXNESS MONSTER” and “FO SHO,” a reference to the Italian playwright Dario Fo. The descendants of Jean-Paul Sartre have reportedly filed for an injunction against the further sale of “NO EXIT” shirts on the website.

© 2013