In February, Nike organized a VIP shopping night just for its business partners, among which is, apparently, Anglo-American University. The event took place at the official Nike store on Na Prikope and lasted from 6-10pm, during which the management introduced a program of discounts on Nike gear. The event was a success if the queues of students and others heading toward the shop and cash desk were any indication. 

Students received notice of the promotion via their AAU email in a message from the Student Council describing the offer.

Most students were not disappointed with the 30 percent discount on the new collection of Nike goods, a 50 percent discount on selected fitness products, an introduction of the limited WMNS Nike premium collection and tables were set up by Yves Rocher representatives sharing some make-up and dermatological advice. 

During the event, about eight staff members walked around the store offering help. Among them was Hanka Peskova, who has been working there for almost a year. Like other employees she walked around and answered questions. Peskova said, ”We like to help out those students who are willing to live a sporty lifestyle. This event was organized for them and I am hoping that everyone will enjoy.” 

Nina Frolova, a third-year student at AAU who was interested in Nike Air shoes, said, ”This is a great opportunity for students. I like to work out whenever I have free time and it helps me to relax and stay healthy after too much studying.

She can’t always afford the gear she’d like, Frolova added, so she appreciates such events.

Nevertheless, after all the glitz, some students were wondering how Nike began its partnership with AAU and how the relationship actually works. Bibiána Hakošová, director of the office of AAU president Alan Krautstengl, explained that the partnership began in 2012. When corporations are interested in marketing their products to students, the university does not have any fixed criteria for how that should work, Hakošová said. ”This concrete cooperation is one of the results of AAU´s efforts to increase the involvement of our alumni and to connect AAU Alumni with current AAU students.” 

In this case, an AAU alumnus is an executive at Nike, who decided to support current students by offering them discounts. No fees changed hands. 

AAU officials say it’s no different than sending out information to students on internships. The sales are not considered advertising and do not appear on the AAU website. All currently registered students receive such messages and there are no plans to review the process.