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Adidas and Reebok to step up the retail pace

Adidas and Reebok are plotting aggressive retail expansion to build profit margins and brand reputation.

Michael Stanier, chief sales officer at the brands’ parent company Adidas Group, said it intended to open 200 to 300 stores worldwide but declined to specify how many of these would be in the UK. Adidas and Reebok have 2,500 wholly-owned stores worldwide at present.

Retail was “without doubt at the heart of growth going forward for the Adidas Group”, he said.

“Wholesale is still the dominant part of the business but we want our growth to come from retail so the group is investing heavily,” Stanier added. “It’s important that the brand is consistent and the DNA of Reebok and Adidas is translated to our consumers, and the best way to do that is through retail.”

Adidas hopes to build its retail portfolio after opening its first flagship store outside London in the Trinity Leeds development.

The 6,545 sq ft store, which opened in August and took the Adidas by Stella McCartney line out of London for the first time, is set to be followed by a store in Newcastle before the year end and at the time of the Trinity Leeds launch, Adidas Group retail director Rupert Campbell said Adidas would expand into “all the major cities in the UK” by 2015.

Meanwhile, Reebok plans to build on its FitHub stores, the first of which opened in Covent Garden last month. Merchandised like a gym, mannequins demonstrate what each product is for and staff have sports science and nutrition training.

The brand will roll out five more FitHub shops before Christmas, starting at Bluewater this month, followed by Reading, Guildford,

Bromley and Oxford. A further four are planned in the new year with more on the cards if successful. Reebok UK brand director James Woolard described FitHubs as “a game changer” for its retail plans, with 80% of the product exclusive to the stores.

“It’s much more premium than what’s on offer at our biggest wholesale account Sports Direct,” Woolard said.

Adidas Group is targeting €17bn (£14.2bn) turnover by 2015, driven by Adidas’s projected sales of €12.8bn (£10.7bn). Reebok’s target is €2bn (£1.7bn). Other brands in the group include Rockport and Adidas Neo.

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