PARIS — Adidas AG ratcheted down its 2012 sales forecast as swift growth in emerging markets and momentum at the Adidas brand failed to compensate for sluggishness in the U.S. and Western Europe and steep declines at Reebok.
Adidas now expects group sales to grow at a high-single-digit rate in 2012 versus a previous target of “approaching 10 percent.”
Revenues advanced 11.5 percent to 4.17 billion euros, or $5.22 billion, in the three months to Sept. 30.
Dollar figures are converted at average exchange rates for the periods to which they refer.
In the quarter, sales at Adidas advanced 10 percent, stripping out the impact of currency, whereas Reebok saw revenues drop 25.3 percent, partly due to the nonrecurrence of licensed sales in the year-ago quarter and a negative impact of Reebok’s operations in India.
By region, revenues in currency-neutral terms advanced 1.1 percent in Western Europe versus 18.6 percent in emerging markets on the Continent. Sales grew 15.7 percent in Latin America and 10.5 percent in Greater China, but they shrank 4.7 percent in North America, mostly due to Reebok.
During a conference call, Adidas chief executive officer Herbert Hainer allowed that the Reebok results were “by no means satisfactory.” Setbacks also included a calming of the toning phenomenon. Still, he trumpeted signs of recovery for the brand, including an 11 percent bump in same-store sales in the third quarter.
“We will bring Reebok back to growth in 2013,” he said, reiterating that a focus on fitness and training is the “right positioning” for the brand.
Hainer also asserted Adidas would “shake up the entire running market” with a product introduction slated for March. The brand also has a tie-up with Justin Bieber for its Neo sports lifestyle line, he added.
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