Adidas Sells Rockport for $280 Million as Hainer Seeks Revival

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ASTANA. KAZINFORM - Adidas AG (ADS) said it will sell the Rockport shoe business to a new company formed jointly by competitor New Balance Athletic Shoe Inc. as it takes the first steps toward a revival.

New Balance has joined forces with private-equity firm Berkshire Partners LLC to acquire the footwear maker for $280 million, Adidas said today in a statement. Rockport will become part of a new company, which will also include New Balance's Drydock business, according to the statement. Adidas shares rose as much as 4.3 percent. Adidas also confirmed that it reached reduced sales and profit targets for 2014. Chief Executive Officer Herbert Hainer is under pressure to effect a turnaround after last year scrapping sales and profit targets for 2015 because of slumping demand for golf supplies in North America and turmoil in Russia. "Our focus is clearly on sport and operating a brand portfolio with a clear agenda to unleash the potential of athletes and inspire consumers to live active lives," Hainer said in the statement. "The brown shoe category is not core to this strategy and the sale of Rockport will allow us to reduce complexity and pursue our target consumer more aggressively with the Adidas, Reebok and TaylorMade brands." Kazinform refers to Bloomberg.com.

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