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ADIDAS, NIKE AGENCIES GOING IN DIFFERENT DIRECTIONS
Published February 15, 1995
While Nike is moving beyond its exclusive arrangement with Portland-based ad agency Wieden & Kennedy, Adidas' longtime agency, London-based Leagas Delaney, is opening an office in Portland to service Adidas' U.S. account. Adidas only spent $4M on U.S. advertising in the first nine months of '94, compared to Nike's $108M, according to Competitive Media Reporting. But, despite the advertising gap, Adidas captured 10% of the American sports shoe market verses Nike's 33%. According to ADVERTISING AGE's Dagmar Mussey, Leagas' opening of an office in Portland "indicates Adidas' desire to regain its supremacy in the U.S. market, where it led the sports shoe category in the early '80's." Adidas will drop Team One, the agency that had handled advertising in the U.S. only. Adidas Chair/CEO Robert Louis- Dreyfus: "It will take another two years until Adidas is as healthy as rivals Nike or Reebok" (ADVERTISING AGE, 2/13). WIEDENING GAP? Wieden & Kennedy are expected to align with McCann-Erickson Worldwide to pitch for Nike's ad campaigns in the Asia-Pacific area and Japan, and they may join for a March pitch for Eastern Europe. According to AD AGE's Jeff Jensen, Nike "has grown frustrated" with Wieden & Kennedy's expansion efforts and told the agency it will have to work with other agencies on work outside the U.S. Nike's international advertising is currently handled by Weiden's Portland and Amsterdam offices (AD AGE, 2/13).