Nike to pay $7.6 mln to settle suit

Nike to pay $7.6 mln to settle suit Nike Inc. has agreed to pay $7.6 million to settle a class-action suit that alleged the sportswear maker discriminated against black employees at its Niketown store in Chicago, according to court documents.

The lawsuit was filed in December 2003 and involves claims on behalf of about 400 current and former black employees of Nike Retail Services Inc.'s store, according to documents filed on Monday in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.

Nike has denied all allegations of wrongdoing and liability in the litigation, according to the filing.

In March last year, the court certified a class that included all current and former black employees of Niketown Chicago from December 17, 1999 to the present, along with four subclasses, according to the filing.

As part of the settlement, Nike has also agreed to take certain affirmative steps, including appointing a compliance officer at its headquarters and diversity training of supervisors at Niketown Chicago, according to the filing.

Nike could not be reached immediately for comment.

(Published by Reuters, July 31, 2007)

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