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Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike

Unabridged Audio Book

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Norbert Leo Butz

13 Hours 21 Minutes

Simon & Schuster Audio

April 2016

Audio Book Summary

In this instant and tenacious New York Times bestseller, Nike founder and board chairman Phil Knight “offers a rare and revealing look at the notoriously media-shy man behind the swoosh” (Booklist, starred review), illuminating his company’s early days as an intrepid start-up and its evolution into one of the world’s most iconic, game-changing, and profitable brands.

Bill Gates named Shoe Dog one of his five favorite books of 2016 and called it “an amazing tale, a refreshingly honest reminder of what the path to business success really looks like. It’s a messy, perilous, and chaotic journey, riddled with mistakes, endless struggles, and sacrifice. Phil Knight opens up in ways few CEOs are willing to do.”

Fresh out of business school, Phil Knight borrowed fifty dollars from his father and launched a company with one simple mission: import high-quality, low-cost running shoes from Japan. Selling the shoes from the trunk of his car in 1963, Knight grossed eight thousand dollars that first year. Today, Nike’s annual sales top $30 billion. In this age of start-ups, Knight’s Nike is the gold standard, and its swoosh is one of the few icons instantly recognized in every corner of the world.

But Knight, the man behind the swoosh, has always been a mystery. In Shoe Dog, he tells his story at last. At twenty-four, Knight decides that rather than work for a big corporation, he will create something all his own, new, dynamic, different. He details the many risks he encountered, the crushing setbacks, the ruthless competitors and hostile bankers—as well as his many thrilling triumphs. Above all, he recalls the relationships that formed the heart and soul of Nike, with his former track coach, the irascible and charismatic Bill Bowerman, and with his first employees, a ragtag group of misfits and savants who quickly became a band of swoosh-crazed brothers.

Together, harnessing the electrifying power of a bold vision and a shared belief in the transformative power of sports, they created a brand—and a culture—that changed everything.

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  • Kyle Mauch

    Incredible story and a must read for any entrepreneur. Loved the narrator too. Thank you Phil!

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  • Santos C.

    The narration complemented the story

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  • Wim K

    Great review of the creation of a global power brand

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  • Anonymous

    Very well written, very interesting and well read

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  • Martin T.

    I have been thinking about listening to this book for a while now, and was it ever worth the wait! Once I started, there was no stopping and I now have to wait two weeks for my next book. Superb narration by Norbert Leo Butz!

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  • Thabo M.

    Super Book. This is how a story needs to be told.

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  • Joseph H.

    how do you spell humorous look at the start of a great company. I was entertained from beginning to end

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  • Greg J.

    Really insightful story, easy to listen to and some things to take away with you.

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  • Felicia M.

    Love, love this, one of my favorite books.

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  • Kevin L.

    I really enjoyed listening to this! Interesting insight to a global brand! I’d have love to hear a bit more about the stars he worked with!

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