In 1997, Adidas, under the leadership of CEO Robert Louis-Dreyfus, purchased
the Salomon Group and created a new aktiengesellschaft named Adidas-Salomon
AG. The Salomon Group was a sportswear company that owned a range of sports
brands, that included: TaylorMade, Arc'teryx, Mavic and Bonfire. The Salomon
Group was founded in 1947 by François Salomon, and their headquarters
were originally located in Annecy, France. Salomon's sporting goods companies
were focused upon golf, cycling and winter sports: these niche sports
broadened the product line of Adidas.
It is probably not a coincidence that the French owned Salomon Group
was purchased by Adidas when Adidas had a French CEO: Robert Louis-Dreyfus.
The new Adidas-Salomon shares were listed on the DAX - German stock exchange
- in 1998. The creation of Adidas-Salomon AG meant that this parent company
could oversee the operation of all the different companies it owned. Each
of the companies in the Adidas-Salomon AG group operated as an independent
entity, and had their headquarters located in different countries. AG
stands for Aktiengesellschaft, and is the German equivalent of a corporation
in the United States of America, or a public listed company (PLC) in the
Due to Adidas purchasing Salmon, the headquarters of Adidas-Salomon were
located in Germany: in the small town of Herzogenaurach; which has been
Adidas' home since it's creation in 1949. In 2005, Adidas announced that
it was selling the Salomon Group to Amer Sports. The Salomon Group was
sold for €480 million to Amer Sports; the sale included the Mavic
and Arc'teryx brands, but did not include TaylorMade Golf. Amer Sports
were founded in 1950, and own a range of sports brands, such as: Wilson,
Atomic, Suunto and Precor.
Upon the sale of Salomon to Amer Sports, TaylorMade Golf was renamed
to TaylorMade-Adidas Golf. Taylormade Golf was founded in America by Gary
Adams, and was purchased by the Salomon Group in 1984. Salomon Group managed
to turn Taylormade into a company generating annual revenues of $1 billion.
Taylormade Golf were the most recognisable brand owned by Salomon when
Adidas acquired them in 1997. Adidas managed to make Taylormade Golf into
the most popular manufacturer of drivers in 2005. Adidas probably purchased
Salomon to gain a foothold into the lucrative golf sporting goods market.
It is perhaps of no surprise that Adidas decided Salomon's other - more
niche - sporting goods brands were not 'fit for purpose'. Upon the sale
of Salomon to Amer Sports, Adidas acquired Reebok, and a new group was
founded: named Adidas Group AG.