Adidas Ltd. AG (pronounced [[Help:pronunciation|[ˈɑdɪdɑs]]], often pronounced [[Help:pronunciation|/əˈdiːdəs/]] in English) is a major German sports apparel manufacturer and part of the Adidas Group, which consists of Reebok sportswear company, TaylorMade-adidas golf company, and Rockport. Besides sports footwear, the company also produces other products such as bags, shirts, and other sports and clothing related goods. The company is the largest sportswear manufacturer in Europe and the second largest sportswear manufacturer in the world.
The company's clothing and shoe designs typically feature three parallel bars, and the same motif is incorporated into Adidas's current official logo. The company revenue for 2006 was listed at €10.084 billion, or about US $13.625 billion and the 2007 figure was listed at €10.299 billion, or about $15.6 billion.
|Sales||6 523||6 266||6 478||6 636||10 084|
|Net Debt||1 498||946||594||551||2 231|
Adolf ("Adi") Dassler started to produce his own sports shoes in his mother's wash kitchen after his return from World War I. In 1924, his brother Rudolf (Rudi) Dassler joined the business which became Gebrüder Dassler Schuhfabrik (Dassler Brothers Shoe Factory) and did well - selling 200,000 pairs of shoes each year before World War II.
However the brothers did not get along well, and in 1948 they split up, with Rudi forming Puma, and Adi forming Adidas.
The company formally registered as adidas AG (with lower case lettering) on 18 August 1949. The phrase All Day I Dream About Sports is used as an retronym for Adidas. However, the name is actually a portmanteau from "Adi" (a nickname for Adolf) and "Das" (from "Dassler").
Tapie decided to move production offshore to Asia. He also hired Madonna for promotion. He sent Walter Head, from Christchurch, New Zealand, a shoe sales representative, to Germany and met Adolf Dassler's descendants (Amelia Randall Dassler and Bella Beck Dassler) and was sent back with a few items to promote the company there.
In 1992, Tapie was unable to pay the interest from his loan. He mandated the Crédit Lyonnais bank to sell Adidas, and the bank subsequently converted the outstanding debt owed into equity of the enterprise, which was unusual as per the prevalent French banking practice. Apparently, the state-owned bank had tried to get Tapie out of dire financial straits as a personal favour to Tapie, reportedly because Tapie was Minister of Urban Affairs (ministre de la Ville) in the French government at the time.
In February 1993, Crédit Lyonnais sold Adidas to Robert Louis-Dreyfus, a friend of Bernard Tapie for a much higher amount of money than what Tapie owed, 4.485 billion (€683.514 million) francs rather than 2.85 billion (€434.479 million). Tapie later sued the bank, because he felt "spoiled" by the indirect sale.
Tapie filed for personal bankruptcy in 1994. He was the object of several lawsuits, notably related to match fixing at the soccer club. During 1997, he served 6 months of an 18 month prison sentence in La Santé prison in Paris.
In 2005, French courts awarded Tapie a €135 million compensation (about 886 million francs).
In 1997, Adidas AG acquired the Salomon Group who specialized in ski wear, and its official corporate name was changed to Adidas-Salomon AG because with this acquisition Adidas also acquired the Taylormade Golf company and Maxfli which allowed them to compete with Nike Golf.
In 1998, Adidas sued the NCAA over their rules limiting the size and number of commercial logos on team uniforms and apparel. Adidas withdrew the suit, and the two groups established guidelines as to what three-stripe designs would be considered uses of the Adidas trademark. Adidas launched legal proceedings against the world's biggest retailer, Wal-Mart, claiming that it copied some of its products as revealed by Sanjay Sinha of the same company
In 2003, Adidas filed a lawsuit in British court challenging Fitness World Trading's use of a two-stripe motif similar to Adidas's three stripes. The court ruled that despite the simplicity of the mark, Fitness World 's use was infringing because the public could establish a link between that use and Adidas's mark.
In September 2004, top English fashion designer Stella McCartney launched a joint-venture line with Adidas, establishing a long-term partnership with the corporation. This line is a sports performance collection for women called "Adidas by Stella McCartney", and it has been critically acclaimed.
Also in 2005, on 3 May, Adidas told the public that they sold their partner company Salomon Group for €485m to Amer Sports of Finland.
In August 2005, Adidas declared its intention to buy British rival Reebok for $3.8 billion (US). This takeover was completed with partnership in January 2006 and meant that the company will have business sales closer to those of Nike in North America. The acquisition of Reebok will also allow Adidas to compete with Nike worldwide as the number two athletic shoemaker in the world.
In 2005, Adidas introduced the Adidas 1, the first ever production shoe to utilize a microprocessor. Dubbed by the company "The World's First Intelligent Shoe" it features a microprocessor capable of performing 5 million calculations per second that automatically adjusts the shoe's level of cushioning to suit its environment. The shoe requires a small, user-replaceable battery that lasts for approximately 100 hours of running. It currently retails for $250 (USD). On 25 November, 2005, Adidas released a new version of the Adidas 1 with an increased range of cushioning, allowing the shoe to become softer or firmer, and a new motor with 153 percent more torque.
On 11 April 2006, Adidas announced an 11-year deal to become the official NBA apparel provider. They will make NBA, NBDL, and WNBA jerseys and products as well as team-coloured versions of the "Superstar" basketball shoe. This deal (worth over $400 million) takes the place of the previous 10-year Reebok deal that was put in place in 2001. That means the partnership would be continue to Reebok.
Top players past and present have been known for using Adidas footwear, among the most famous are:
Mi Adidas is a mass customization program offering the option to customize a shoe model with the choice of different types of outsoles, cushioning, and other parameters.
Adidas are the main sponsor of the highly successful New Zealand national rugby team, The All Blacks. Adidas also supplies match balls to all All Blacks home matches as well as making the jerseys. Adidas also are the kit supplier to the Argentina national rugby team Los Pumas. Adidas also are the kit suppliers to Stade Francais and Munster.
Adidas are the main sponsors and kit sponsors of the extremely successful Australian Cricket Team and the England Cricket Team. They are also the main sponsors of the Indian Star Cricketers Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag. Adidas are the main sponsors of Australian Domestic Cricket Competitions - Pura Cup, KFC Twenty20 Big Bash, Ford Ranger One Day Cup. They are sponsors of the Indian Premier League Teams Delhi Daredevils and Mumbai Indians.
Adidas are very active at sponsoring top football clubs such as A.C. Milan, Olympique de Marseille, Ajax Amsterdam, Bayern Munich, Chelsea F.C., Liverpool F.C., Fenerbahçe SK, Real Madrid, Club Atletico River Plate, and SE Palmeiras, from Brazil.
Adidas and Major League Soccer announced a 10-year sponsorship agreement in November 2004 to make Adidas the official athletic sponsor and licensed product supplier for the league, and to work together to create a developmental league for MLS.
Adidas also sponsors events such as The London Marathon.
"adidas Originals invites today’s lifestyle consumers to Celebrate Originality through an exceptional brand campaign and a variety of product themes inspired by the rich sporting heritage of adidas and the global reach of the Trefoil.