Nike has come under investigation by the European Commission over licensing and distribution practices across the continent.
A major antitrust investigation has been launched into the sportswear retailer, alongside Universal Studios and the owner of Hello Kitty, as concerns emerge that the companies illegally prevent retailers from selling licensed goods across borders.
According to the European Commission, the investigation relates to the sale of any goods on which an image or text is applied to during manufacturing.
These are only allowed to be applied to goods if a licensing deal has been signed by the intellectual property owners and the manufacturers.
The commission alleges the three companies may have prevented these manufacturers from trading, stating it would “investigate whether the three companies, in their role as licensors of rights for merchandising products, may have breached EU competition rules by restricting their licensees’ ability to sell licensed merchandise cross-border and online”.