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Nike’s Phil Knight Pens Memoir Due Next Year

Nike Inc. Co-Founder and Chairman Phil Knight has written a memoir set to be published next spring by the Scribner imprint of Simon & Schuster Inc. The book will tell the story of Nike as seen through Knight’s eyes, who for the first time looks back on a career that catapulted him from selling running shoes from the trunk of his Plymouth Valiant to head of a global company with annual sales of $30 billion.

“For a long time, I have had requests – from a couple of prominent publishing houses and many diverse individuals – to write the story of how Nike began,” said Knight in a statement through Scribner. “I had neither the time nor the inclination – until the last couple of years. Giving up more and more daily responsibility, I have found the time and the perspective. Or said another way: If I didn’t do it now, it wasn’t going to be done at all.”

Knight’s book, currently untitled, will touch upon controversies such as working conditions at factories overseas, but will focus largely on the early years. Knight created Nike with $50 he borrowed from his father, and recalls Nike’s first partners and employees, who he describes as a “band of brothers” with a shared mission. Scribner described the book as “studded with lessons” about business and overcoming adversity.

“This is a classic American story about an innovator with astonishing vision, unflinching resolve, and unbelievable luck,” said Shannon Welch, Scribner senior editor, who will edit the book. “Phil Knight is an open, vivid, and searching storyteller with an unexpected and riveting story to tell. His memoir is rich with insight, humor, and hard-won wisdom.”