German brand adidas is one of the world’s two biggest sportswear companies alongside Nike, but its greatest historical rival was fraternal. Shoemaking brothers Adolf and Rudolf Dassler founded Gebrüder Dassler Schuhfabrik in 1924 before becoming estranged and founding their own companies, adidas and PUMA. The Brand with the Three Stripes is not only a behemoth in sports such as football; its Run-DMC-driven popularity in ’80s NYC helped adidas become a lifestyle giant, too.
The name adidas comes from its founder’s name, Adolf, and its abbreviation, “Adi.”
Adidas is one of the most famous German clothing brands that manufactures and sells sportswear, founded by Adolf “Adi” Dassler in Herzogenaurach, Germany, in 1949.
Adidas AG, the adidas group, is one of the largest manufacturers of sports shoes and clothing in Europe and the second-biggest in the world after the main competitor Nike. Adidas produces and sells sports clothing, sneakers, running shoes, bags, accessories like watches and sunglasses, and so on through its e-com shop, over a thousand retail stores, and several franchises. The brand is headquartered in Herzogenaurach, Germany.
Some of adidas’ most important collaborations have often been with figures from hip-hop. The label has released Kanye YEEZY-branded sneakers, Pharrell Williams, Pusha-T, and Missy Elliott endorsements. Adidas’ importance in hip-hop dates back to the mid-’80s and Run-DMC’s love of the brand’s tracksuits and shell-toe Superstar sneakers, culminating in the 1986 single “My Adidas.” The most famous sneaker styles have been adidas Samba, adidas Stan Smith, and the iconic shell-toe adidas Superstar silhouettes.
The sportswear giant has also had several key collaborations with streetwear brands, such as A Bathing Ape and Palace Skateboards, and high fashion designers, including Yohji Yamamoto’s Y-3 line, Raf Simons, Rick Owens, Stella McCartney, and Alexander Wang.
$22,51 billion (2022)
Adidas shoes are made in three different locations. First, adidas shoes are designed and tested with different materials in the adidas HQ in Herzogenaurach, Germany. Then, most of the adidas shoe production is done in their manufacturing facility in Indonesia. Additionally, adidas has a “Speedfactory” in Bavaria, where high-speed production is based on and customized to athletes’ data.
Since Horst Dassler, the son of Adolf Dassler, passed away in 1987, adidas was sold and is no longer family-owned. Instead, Adidas is now owned by Adidas AG, a multinational corporate group owned by several shareholders. The majority holders are football club Bayern München and Austrian fitness company Runtastic.
Adidas was founded in 1949.
Adidas was founded in Herzogenaurach, Germany, a small German town known as the home of two major sportswear companies.
Adidas was founded by German entrepreneur Adolf “Adi” Dassler, the younger brother of Rudolf Dassler, who was the founder of Puma.
From 2016 to 2022 November, Kasper Rørsted was the CEO of adidas. However, as of January 2022, Bjørn Gulden, previous PUMA chief, will take over from Rørsted after the Yeezy partnership crisis.
Adidas AG, the Adidas Group, is headquartered in Herzogenaurach, Germany.
Adidas’ tagline is “Impossible Is Nothing,” which communicates the brand’s passion for sport and the desire to be the pioneering one-stop shop for athletes.
Kanye West Yeezy sneakers were produced by adidas between 2015 to 2022; however, adidas dropped the Kanye Yeezy with an immediate end to the contract in October due to Kanye’s repeated hate speech. Adidas’ revenue share from Yeezy shoes was reportedly nearly 7% of its annual revenue in 2021.
Yeezy was first brought to the hype after a collab with streetwear brand A Bathing Ape (BAPE) by NIGO, Dropout Bear Bapesta in 2006, later releasing a collaboration with Louis Vuitton in 2009. From 2009 to 2013, the Kanye Yeezy sneakers brand partnered with Nike, releasing two silhouettes and two styles before parting ways due to disagreements about royalties.
Adidas Group owned Reebok from 2005 to 2022. On the 12th of August 2021, it was announced Authentic Brands Group would acquire the brand, with the deal finalized on the 1st of March 2022 worth around $2.5 billion.
To guarantee your adidas sneakers will last, it’s crucial to treat them the right way, which includes cleaning them properly. If you are wondering how to wash adidas shoes, follow a simple procedure. First, don’t put your adidas sneakers in the washing machine; in this case, a simple soap and water mixture and a cloth will do the trick. You can follow the same procedure if you don’t know how to clean white adidas shoes.
First, before cleaning, put some newspapers in your adidas shoes to make sure they retain their shape while cleaning, and remove the shoelaces. Then, you can use a shoe brush or a toothbrush (that you don’t use anymore) to remove any dirt. Next, mix the soap and water, dip a cloth in the water, and then rub the stains on the shoes. In the case of a canvas (fabric) shoe, don’t scrub too hard to avoid damage. Once clean, leave them to dry — don’t leave them in direct sunlight to prevent color fade, and don’t put them in the drier.
The story of the adidas logo dates back to 1951 when the Brand With the Three Stripes bought the three-stripe trademark from Finnish brand Karhu for today’s equivalent of $1,800 and two bottles of whisky (at least that’s how the story is retold today).
In 1971, adidas updated its branding with the leaf-like Trefoil logo ahead of the Munich Olympic Games. It became a classic piece of branding, seen on tracksuits and traditional sneaker models. In 1991, the adidas Equipment (later EQT) performance line introduced the tilted “three bars” logo designed by Nike Air Jordan 1 creator Peter Moore.
Yes, adidas is a German brand founded in a small German town called Herzogenaurach.
Adidas Stan Smith is, in fact, not a person but a sneaker silhouette by adidas. Adidas Stan Smith is one of the most iconic sneakers by the Brand of Three Stripes, first created in 1965 and named after an American tennis player Stan Smith in 1978.
Adidas Group employs over 60,000 people across the globe.
Adidas Originals is a subdivision of adidas dedicated to lifestyle, fashion, and heritage products. It is home to many brands' collaborations with fashion designers, celebrities, and cultural figures. For example, Pharrell's collaborations come under the adidas Originals by Pharrell Williams label (sometimes stylized adidas Originals = Pharrell Williams). Alexander Wang's products are adidas Originals by Alexander Wang, and so on.
Adidas Originals is represented by the old-school Trefoil logo, which was replaced as the symbol of the brand's performance sportswear products by the "three bars" logo, introduced with the 1991's Equipment (EQT) line.
You can buy adidas directly at the Highsnobiety shop.
Adolf and brother Rudolf make their first shoe.
The brothers found Gebrüder Dassler Schuhfabrik (“Dassler Brothers Shoe Factory”).
The Dasslers develop shoes with studs and spikes for football and athletics.
Dassler shoes are worn at the Olympics for the first time, with German 800 meter runner Lina Radke-Batschauer becoming the first athlete to win gold in Dassler shoes.
The company releases the first shoe marketed specifically for tennis.
The Dassler brothers join the Nazi Party on May 1, three months after Adolf Hitler comes to power in Germany.
Black US athlete Jesse Owens makes history at the Berlin Olympics, winning four gold medals in Dassler atheltic shoes and embarrassing a watching Hitler.
Recriminations relating to post-WW2 investigations into Adolf and Rudolf’s Nazi-era activities lead to a permanent rupture in the brothers’ relationship.
Adolf starts up shoe production again with 47 workers, registering the name Adi Dassler adidas Sportsschuhfabrik on August 18.
The adidas Samba sneakers football shoe is first released.
Adidas buys the three-stripe trademark from Finnish brand Karhu, reportedly for two bottles of whisky and the equivalent of $1,800. Previous Dassler shoes had featured two, three, and four support stripes. Jesse Owens wore two-striped Dassler shoes at the 1936 Olympics.
West Germany’s national football team wins its first World Cup against heavy favorites Hungary in Bern, Switzerland, thanks in part to new adidas football cleats with screw-in studs, which give the Germans an advantage in the heavy rain. adidas and PUMA later dispute which company invented screw-in studs.
The brand releases a leather tennis shoe named after French player Robert Haillet. After Haillet’s retirement in 1971, the Haillet shoe is endorsed by US player Stan Smith and renamed. Throughout the ’70s, models carry a mixture of Haillet and Smith branding, before references to Haillet are finally removed in 1978. The Stan Smith goes on to become adidas’ biggest-selling sneaker, setting a Guinness World Record in 1988 with 22 million pairs sold.
The sportswear brand releases the adidas Gazelle sneaker.
The brand releases its first apparel, adidas tracksuit named after German football star Franz Beckenbauer with three stripes down the sides of the arms and legs.
The brand releases its first adidas basketball shoe, the Superstar, worn by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
The Telstar football is used at the World Cup in Mexico. Every World Cup since has been played with an adidas ball.
adidas introduces its Trefoil logo. Heavyweight boxing champions Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier wear adidas boots in the “Fight of the Century” at Madison Square Garden, New York City.
adidas releases the SL 72 training shoe for the Olympics in Munich, West Germany.
Adolf Dassler dies on September 6, aged 77.
adidas releases the Copa Mundial football boot and the Spezial sneaker.
adidas releases the Campus sneaker.
adidas launches its ZX series of running shoes, starting with the ZX 500.
Run-DMC release single “My Adidas.” Fans hold up their adidas shoes as the trio perform the song at Madison Square Garden. The hip-hoppers had been rocking the brand since their 1984 self-titled debut album.
adidas introduces its Torsion arch support tech.
adidas Equipment (later EQT) is launched. Its “three bars” logo is designed by Peter Moore, designer of the Nike Air Jordan 1.
adidas launches the Predator football boot. Designed by former pro Craig Johnston, who came up with the idea by sticking the rubber from a table tennis bat to a football boot, the Predator’s vulcanized rubber on the upper was said to improve players’ shooting power.
adidas signs basketball prodigy Kobe Bryant, releasing his first signature shoe, the KB8 (aka Crazy 8), in 1997. Signing the NBA’s best player goes some way to rectifying the brand’s mistake of missing out on Michael Jordan in 1984. 1997 — adidas acquires French outdoor sports brand Salomon.
adidas Originals is launched, with the first Originals store opening in Berlin, Germany. Adopting the classic Trefoil logo, the division focuses on lifestyle and heritage products, becoming home to most of the brand’s collaborations.
adidas turns its 2002 partnership with Japanese designer Yohji Yamamoto into the Y-3 sub-brand. It also collaborates with Tokyo streetwear label A Bathing Ape for the first time, releasing the Super Ape Star and Super Ape Skate.
adidas partners with rapper Missy Elliott on the Respect ME line and fashion designer Stella McCartney on the adidas by Stella McCartney line.
adidas sells Salomon to Amer Sports.
adidas signs teenage football prodigy Lionel Messi of Barcelona and Argentina. He goes on to become arguably the greatest player of all time and signs a lifetime deal with the brand in 2017. Elsewhere, the company buys British sportswear brand Reebok and signs an 11-year contract to become the NBA’s official uniform and apparel provider.
adidas and Def Jam Recordings release a collection to celebrate the record label’s 25th anniversary.
adidas works with Pusha-T for the first time, with the rapper signing a new deal with the brand early in 2019.
adidas poaches Kanye West from Nike, with his first adidas YEEZY sneaker, the Boost 750, dropping in 2015. The brand also debuts collaborations with fashion designers Raf Simons and Rick Owens.
Adds Pharrell Williams to its endorsers, releasing a collection of adidas Stan Smith and adidas Superstar track jackets toward the end of the year.
Collaborates with UK skateboard label Palace for the first time. By 2018, Angelique Kerber would win the Wimbledon tournament in Palace x adidas gear.
Adidas partnered with fashion designer Alexander Wang.
Danish business executive Kasper Rørsted was appointed as the new adidas CEO.
Opened its first adidas “Speedfactory” in Bavaria.
Adidas relaunched the adidas EQT, a sneaker silhouette from the early 90s.
Signed as the official National Hockey League (NHL) uniform provider.
Promoted Soviet-theme clothing items caused a media storm, after which the products were taken off the market.
To celebrate the adidas ZX franchise from 2008 and 2009, adidas Originals launched a 26-piece sneaker capsule.
It was announced adidas will sell Reebok to Authentic Brands Group, with the deal finalized on the 1st of March 2022.
Addison Rae’s adidas bikini praying campaign faces backlash.
Japanese anime series YU-GI-OH! X ADIDAS collaborated.
Kasper Rørsted steps down after the Kanye Yeezy crisis. It is announced that in January 2022, Bjørn Gulden, previous PUMA chief, will take over.
Balenciaga X adidas Stan Smith’s drops in November.
BAPE and adidas team up again on adidas Superstar sneakers.
Ronnie Fieg Made Clarks x adidas Sambas a Thing
Three Iconic adidas Sneakers Have Become Literal Works of Art
After months of murmurs, the German sportswear company finally confirmed its plans to sell its leftover YEEZY sneaker stock.