Adidas splits into three in repositioning

Adidas-Salomon is repositioning as a sports to lifestyle brand. A restructure will create the company’s first dedicated division for leisurewear, only nine months after it scrapped plans for a men’s fashion brand.

A new global business strategy splits the company into three divisions – Original, Forever Sport, and Equipment – each producing its own apparel and footwear. The company’s tagline changes from “Forever sport” to “Forever sport – from competition to lifestyle”.

The Original division will create products for leisure using the old-style trefoil Adidas logo. It intends to compete with brands such as Gap and Polo and will roll out in spring/summer 2002.

Adidas has been considering creating a fashion-led clothing brand for some time. Last year, its board approved the development of a casual range for high income men aged 20-35 (MW August 5 1999) but later scrapped the plans, saying it did not want to dilute its sporting image (MW January 27).

The Forever Sport division will feature performance sports products, competing with Nike, Reebok and Puma. It will use the three-stripe Adidas Performance logo.

The Equipment division will create multi-functional sports products for upmarket consumers. Its first product launches will appear for autumn/winter 2002.

Erich Stamminger, Adidas executive board member responsible for global marketing, says: “We want to mean more to more people.”

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