Adidas announced today (August 12, 2021) that it has entered into an agreement to sell Reebok to Authentic Brands Group for a total of € 2.1 billion (approximately $2.5 billion). The closing of the transaction is expected to occur in the first quarter of 2022.
“Reebok has been a valued part of adidas, and we are grateful for the contributions the brand and the team behind it have made to our company. With this change in ownership, we believe the Reebok brand will be well-positioned for long-term success. As for Adidas, we will continue to focus our efforts on executing our ‘Own the Game’ strategy that will enable us to grow in an attractive industry, gain market share, and create sustainable value for all of our stakeholders,” said Kasper Rørsted, CEO of Adidas.
Jamie Salter, founder, chairman and CEO of Authentic Brands Group commented, “It’s an honor to be entrusted with carrying Reebok’s legacy forward. This is an important milestone for ABG, and we are committed to preserving Reebok’s integrity, innovation, and values, including its presence in bricks and mortar. We look forward to working closely with the Reebok team to build on the brand’s success.”
Authentic Brands is a New York-based American brand management company whose holdings include apparel, athletics, and entertainment brands, for which it partners with other companies to license and merchandise. Its portfolio include Aeropostale, Forever 21, Frye, IZOD, Nine West, Vince Camuto, Volcom and many more.
The company hasn’t announced how it will integrate Reebok into its business including whether it will retain Reebok’s Boston headquarters or continue agreements with the brand’s current creative partnerships. However, in a separate statement, Salter said the brand would remain headquartered in Boston, and would “work closely with Adidas, Reebok’s President Matt O’Toole and the Reebok team to transition the brand to ABG’s platform.”
German-based Adidas bought Reebok in 2006 for $3.8 billion in an attempt to expand its presence in the U.S. market and better compete with Nike. Purchased under the leadership of then CEO Herbert Hainer, Adidas struggled to position Reebok as a performance brand while also failing to capitalize on its lifestyle potential.
Under the direction of Adidas Rørsted, the company announced in March it was ready to cut ties with Reebok to better focus all of its energies on Adidas. In a press release, Rørsted stated, “After careful consideration, we have come to the conclusion that Reebok and Adidas will be able to significantly better realize their growth potential independently of each other. We will work diligently in the coming months to ensure a successful future for the Reebok brand and the team behind it.”