Nike Forced to Hand Over Communications with Lance Armstrong

Nike Forced to Hand Over Communications with Lance Armstrong

USA Today reported a federal judge in Portland ordered Nike to turn over some of the records about its business relationship with Lance Armstrong.

Lance Armstrong is being sued by the federal authorities and former cyclist Floyd Landis for $100 million.

The court is accessing whether Armstrong must recoup the more than $30 million paid to him by the U.S. Postal Service in sponsorship money. The government argues that Armstrong breached the team’s sponsorship contract by doping and then concealed it with false statements in order to keep the payments coming and avoid having to pay the money back.

Nike’s information is expected to be critical in determining whether Armstrong’s admission of doping strongly diminished his value as an endorser. Armstrong’s lawyers conversely want the information to show that the the federal government profited greatly from his success on the USPS team.

Nike has said both parties have copies of its contracts with Armstrong, and disclosing additional information could put it at a competitive disadvantage, according to USA Today.

“Much of the information sought by the parties comprises trade secrets or, at the very least, confidential commercial information, including proprietary sponsorship agreements, financial results and evaluations, and related communications,” a Nike attorney wrote in briefs in August.

Nike dumped Armstrong in 2012.

The USA Today article is here.