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Michael Jordan’s “Jumpman” might be the most famous athlete-associated logo on earth.
Many athletes have their own branding and design; Tom Brady for example, has TB12 and LeBron James has his crown logo.
Michael Jordan of the Chicago Bulls looks to make a basket as Seattle SuperSonics guard Gary Payton defends in the fourth quarter of the 18 March game at the United Center in Chicago, Illinois. (VINCENT LAFORET/AFP via Getty Images)
But Jordan’s brand outshines them all.
The Jumpman logo has progressed from the famous Air Jordan shoes to a full line of clothing and accessories. The Nike owned brand even provides uniforms for several major college sports programs such as Michigan and UCLA.
All 30 NBA teams also use the logo for their “statement edition” jerseys.
Michael Jordan (R) of the Chicago Bulls flies to the basket past Luc Longley 10 May in game four of their Eastern Conference semi-final against the Charlotte Hornets at the Charlotte Coliseum in Charlotte, NC. (ROBERT SULLIVAN/AFP via Getty Images)
The image of Jordan flying through the air holding a basketball is inarguably iconic, but its origins apparently had nothing to do with basketball.
While doing a photoshoot with former brand design head Peter Moore, Jordan jumped into the air while doing a ballet move.
Moore then captured the iconic photo and used the silhouette for the logo:
The Jumpman brand is now worth upwards of $3 billion, and sales of its iconic Air Jordans have exploded in recent years. Nike revealed that between 2020-2021, they sold over $5 billion worth of Jordan branded shoes, essentially equalling a year’s worth of sales for the entire Under Armour company.
Michael Jordan of the Chicago Bulls (L) eyes the basket as he is guarded by Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers during their 01 February game in Los Angeles, CA. (Vince Bucci/AFP via Getty Images)
Years after his retirement, Michael Jordan’s sportswear brand is stronger than ever, even though the inspiration for its logo had nothing to do with sports.