Marketing Blog: Nike & Sears brand equity issue

I found one blog earlier which has very interesting news and information about marketing.
http://tammygowans.blogspot.com/

In her blog, Tammy has an interesting post regarding Nike and Sears. Nike has decided to pull their products out from Sears stores and protect their brand equity. One reason is that Sears was bought by Kmart. Kmart has a much lower brand equity than Nike. If Sears continue to carry Nike products; this will lower Nike's brand equity and hurt their image among consumers as an exclusive brands. Nike does not want to decrease their brand equity by allowing Sears to distribute their products. You can read it here for the full article.

My thoughts? I don't think it will really affect Nike's brand image or lower their brand equity if they continue to sell it through Sears. Nike is already well established among consumers. Lets put it this way, if you find a cheap store selling Nike shoes? Will your brand image of Nike be affected or lowered? I don't think so at least for me. However, it is not what I think; marketing is about what the other consumers think. Anyway, I still think that maintaining the brand equity is part of their marketing, advertising and PR efforts and not really from the distribution point of view. What do you think?
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