By  on May 8, 2009

PARIS — Herbert Hainer is to remain at the helm of Adidas AG beyond 2010.

At its annual general meeting Thursday, the German activewear giant said Hainer’s term as chairman and chief executive officer, due to expire in 2010, has been extended. While terms of the contract were not disclosed, a spokeswoman said the extension was for “several years.”

Last year, Hainer, who was appointed ceo and chairman in March 2001, was paid 3.4 million euros, or $5.1 million at average exchange.

“The Adidas Group is in the fortunate position to be continuously headed by Mr. Hainer during this difficult time and beyond,” stated Hans Friderichs, outgoing supervisory board chairman.

Hainer told the meeting Adidas would be unable to maintain its high results track record, which includes eight years of double-digit earnings growth. “2009 is a very challenging year. While we are not parting with success, faced with this crisis, we do have to reevaluate success and work hard to succeed again,” he said.

The company’s first-quarter performance, published Tuesday, surprised analysts as Adidas posted a 97 percent drop in net profits, hit by restructuring costs at Reebok, plus currency effects and discounting.

Concerns raised by shareholders included the ongoing struggle to turn Reebok around. One asked whether it wouldn’t be better to sell the firm now and questioned the wisdom of the strategy to increase the brand’s prices, which might then compete with Adidas.

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