Follow us


Adidas confirms potential sale of Reebok

Lauretta Roberts
14 December 2020

Adidas has confirmed that it may sell Reebok, the sports brand of British origin that it acquired for $3.8bn (£2.8bn) in 2006.

Rumours emerged in the German media back in October that Adidas was considering offloading Reebok and today the company said that it had "begun to assess strategic alternatives" for Reebok, which may result in a sale.

Adidas said it would be outlining its new five-year strategy, including plans for Reebok, in March of next year.

Reebok was founded in in Bolton in 1958 (early designs carried the Union Flag on them)and the brand shot to prominence in the 1980s, having secured a US distributor, with its Freestyle aerobics shoe for women.

Its headquarters are now in Boston, Massachusetts with regional offices around the world. Adidas acquired the business in the hope of using the brand to take on rival Nike in its home market, but it proved not to be as successful an acquisition as had been hoped.

Reebok lost €150m (£134m) in 2016 but returned to profitability in 2018. Prior to the pandemic Adidas had sought to sell the brand and was hoping to achieve a €2bn price for it.

However it is understood that Adidas CEO Kasper Rorsted is now reconciled to the fact that he would have to compromise on that asking price as Reebok sales were harder hit than those of Adidas by the COVID-19 pandemic. It is said that Reebok sales dropped 42% as a result of the crisis while those of Adidas dropped by a third.

Back in October parties reported to be interested in taking on the Reebok brand included VF Corp, parent of Timberland, Vans and North Face, and Chinese firm Anta International.

Free NewsletterVISIT