Nike VP resigns after being tied to son’s sneaker resale store

Ann Herbert had been at the company for over 25 years

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Ann Hebert has voluntarily stepped down as Nike’s North America general manager and vice president.

Herbert had been at the company for over 25 years until it was reported in Bloomberg last week that her son, Joe Hebert, 19, was running a sneaker resale business known as West Coast Streetwear. Herbert resigned effective March 1.

“No violation of company policy, privileged information or conflicts of interest, nor is there any commercial affiliation between WCS LLC and Nike, including the direct buying or selling of Nike products,” said Nike per Bloomberg.

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(Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

“Ann Hebert made the decision to resign from Nike,” said a Nike spokesperson to USA TODAY

Read More: Rare Barack Obama-inspired pair of Nikes removed from auction site

Joe would use his mother’s corporate American Express card and bots to purchase massive amounts of rare sneakers and sell them for an inflated price. He purchased about 2,000 pairs of sneakers for about $200,000. Per the story, his mother had no affiliation with his enterprise and Ann claims to have informed Nike of her son’s LLC back in 2018.

The son also used bots to his advantage to purchase the highly sought after PlayStation 5 when it dropped in November.

“We botted Walmart and Target pretty hard,” said Joe. “I ended up with 24 of them and made between $300 and $500 on each one.”

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during day one of 2018 BET Experience Fan Fest at Los Angeles Convention Center on June 22, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Credit: Getty Images)

The former Nike VP’s son isn’t the only one with his eye on the sneaker business. As reported by theGrio back in December, the rapper turned entrepreneur Master P has his eye on Reebok.

Rap mogul Master P and former NBA star Baron Davis are negotiating to buy Reebok from its parent company, Adidas, for $2.4 billion. The deal would make the legendary shoe giant the first Black-owned major sneaker brand. 

Read More: Ballerina gets emotional over pointe shoes that match skin tone in viral video

Adidas acquired Reebok in 2005 for $3.8 billion, however, its value has decreased significantly in the decade and a half since that deal, and Adidas is looking to offload the brand. 

Reebok was the first major shoe company to sign a music artist in an endorsement deal the way big-label companies previously attached themselves to athletes. The brand collaborated with Jay-Z in 2003 and saw an immediate increase in sales the following year. 

“I think Reebok is being undervalued,” said Davis, according to Forbes. “I left Nike as a 22-year-old kid representing myself and made the jump to Reebok, which took a chance on me as a creative and as an athlete. I want the people I know — athletes, influencers, designers, celebs — to sit at the table with me.”

Master P thegrio.com
Master P (Credit: Getty Images)

“These companies have been benefiting off us, this could be history for this company going Black-owned,” Master P, whose real name is Percy Millertold ESPN. 

The men’s purchase could reenergize Reebok in the sneaker and streetwear markets as a Black-owned brand in a year that has seen many calling for a change in socioeconomic and racial justice. They reportedly plan to pave lanes making it easier for independent sneaker-makers to get their products distributed.

“As we focus on turning Reebok into a lifestyle brand, not just a basketball brand,” said Miller. “Our most important initiative will be to put money back into the community that built this company.”

Additional reporting by Biba Adams

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