SBD/26/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

AN AMERICAN REVIVAL: ADIDAS MAKES STRIDES SINCE '93

     The resurgance of Adidas is profiled by Greg Pesky in the
current issue of SPORTING GOODS BUSINESS.  The company, which was
"driven down by former management who believed the tradition and
equity were enough to power sales," has been on the way back over
the past two years.  In '93, Adidas AG acquired Sports Inc., a
sports marketing and design firm, and appointed Peter Moore and
the late Rob Strasser to head up the American operations.  Moore
says the company was "misguided in the U.S. for quite some time,"
but now they are a "much better" company in the U.S.  Sales for
Adidas America have jumped more than $200M since '93, with the
'95 total expected to pass $500M.
     WHY THE CHANGE?  SGB's Pesky writes that "as much as the
company's revival is due to a global refocusing," it is also due
to "significant strides in a number of key categories."  One has
been apparel, which is expected to account for 40% of the
company's annual income by the end of '96.  In particular is a
focus on women's and children's lines, and being "functionally-
oriented rather than sport specific."  Adidas America has also
improved delivery to retailers and has been a "stronger partner
operationally."
     WHAT'S NEXT?  An area that has "piqued interest" at Adidas
is licensed sports apparel, as insiders say they were interested
in acquiring Apex One last year.  The company is currently
developing "evolutionary" licensed soccer apparel in Europe that
they could sell in the U.S., they also have a deal with the MLS
to sell licensed apparel and has a partnership to sell NBA
apparel in Europe.  The company is also taking a "different
marketing approach" than other brands, as they have yet to make
major endorsement deals, but have paid to sign a "number of
college teams to provide increased recognition" of the Adidas
cleated line -- including a multi-year deal with the Univ. of
Nebraska beginning this season (SPORTING GOODS BUSINESS, 9/95
issue).
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