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Kasper Rørsted (Adidas): meeting athletes’ needs

At an event held at Deutsche Bank Luxembourg, Kasper Rørsted, CEO of Adidas, described the strategy adopted by the "Three-band brand" to remain one of the world leaders.


Can you introduce us to Adidas in a few words?

Everyone knows the history of the Dasler brothers: following the split of the family business at the end of the 1950s, Rudolf founded Puma and Adi launched Adidas. Since then, we have been working hard to meet the needs of all athletes. After the 1954 championship Mannschaft, Muhammad Ali and Dick Fosbury, we continue, even today, to support the greatest athletes in each discipline, such as Paul Pogba and Dominic Thiem. Sports has the power to change lives, and we support all amateur athletes in their daily struggles. Our mission is to give young people a goal, to be passionate and surpass themselves. This is why we encourage all sports activities and raise awareness about its benefits. We can count on our 60,000 employees to carry out these missions and make Adidas the best sports company in the world.

“Because sports has the power to change lives, we support all amateur athletes in their daily struggles.


What strategy is Adidas pursuing to develop itself?

Adidas never gambles to lose. That's why, when we launch a new project, we always keep a business objective in mind. As a proof, we have a partnership with the three football clubs that sold the most jerseys last year, namely Manchester United, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich. To stimulate the growth and sustainability of our activities, we attach particular importance to marketing, for which we invest between 12 to 14% of our turnover each year. And even though Adidas celebrates its 70th anniversary this year, it stays on board with new trends. Which is why 90% of our marketing goes through digital media, our application totaled 7 million downloads last year and our e-commerce site is the one of the most important in the world. Other examples also illustrate our commitment to innovation: The Futurecraft 4D shoe printed in 3D, the Yeezy Boost designed by Kanye West and the recycled collection Parley.

What are Adidas' objectives for the coming years?

Our next objectives? Achieve global growth of 5 to 8%, particularly in the Chinese and American markets. To achieve this, Adidas is undergoing a major transformation and invests more than 150 million euros each year in research and development. No more "shoe makers", make way for designers to anticipate future trends. We rely heavily on 3D printings to create the sneakers of tomorrow because this production method meets the new expectations of consumers. But we also do our utmost to anticipate new distribution channels and accelerate our development in the e-commerce market. Today, we produce 900 million items, including 409 million for sneakers alone, and we give ourselves the means to go even further. Because after all, "it's all about sports ".

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