The sports apparel giant said the funds will be “focused on investing in and supporting organizations that put social justice, education and addressing racial inequality in America at the center of their work.” The grant was announced after Floyd’s death while in Minneapolis police custody sparked nationwide protests against police brutality.
“Systemic racism and the events that have unfolded across America over the past few weeks serve as an urgent reminder of the continued change needed in our society,” said Nike CEO and president John Donahoe. “We know Black Lives Matter. We must educate ourselves more deeply on the issues faced by Black communities and understand the enormous suffering and senseless tragedy racial bigotry creates.”
“The Nike Inc. family can always do more but will never stop striving to role model how a diverse company acts,” Donahoe added. “We will continue our focus on being more representative of our consumers while doing our part in the communities we serve.”
Aside from the $40 million in new funding, Nike has stepped up efforts to improve workplace diversity throughout the last year, according to the company.
Nike was among the first corporate brands to speak out after Floyd’s death.
"For once, Don't Do It. Don't pretend there's not a problem in America,” Nike said in a video posted on its social media accounts.
NBA legend Michael Jordan, one of the company’s most prominent endorsers, released a statement saying he was deeply saddened by Floyd’s death.
Instances of looting have occurred alongside mostly peaceful protests in cities around the country in recent days. Several Nike stores were vandalized or looted. In a statement, Nike said it does not “condone violence” adding none of its employees were injured in the incidents.