Chinese sportswear and footwear manufacturer and retailer Qiaodan Sports Company Limited is being sued by basketball star Michael Jordan for unauthorised use of his name.

The lawsuit filed in a Chinese court alleges the sportswear firm deliberately and aggressively used Michael Jordan's name without his permission and misled Chinese consumers.

The Chinese company has registered and uses the name "Qiaodan", which is the moniker Michael Jordan has been known by in China since he gained widespread popularity in the mid-1980s.

"During my basketball career and now as a businessman, I've worked hard to establish my identity and brand, and I take tremendous pride in the shoes and apparel that feature my name and logo," Jordan said in a statement.

"It is deeply disappointing to see a company build a business off my Chinese name without my permission, use the number 23 and even attempt to use the names of my children. I am taking this action to preserve ownership of my name and my brand."

However, according to local media, the sportswear firm which is based in south eastern China says: "Qiaodan is a trademark registered under the Chinese law by our company and the legitimate use of the trademark is protected."