Caught amidst the alleged Rs 850 crores fraud andunhappy Reebok franchises, German sports major Adidas, which acquired Reebok in 2006, has brought a new managing director, Erick Haskell on board. His task is to revive the brand’s status in India, as competing brands like Nike brace up to eat into the former’s market.
Meanwhile, Reebok is planning a major rejig for its India operations, rescripting business models with associates while incorporating strict clauses to guard against any financial irregularity. Parent Adidas and its affiliates will also be covered in the exercise, while the sports retailer witnesses a second change of guard at the helm in under a year. After announcing a new strategy for the Indian market, the group is also contemplating opening own outlets for its brands with Indian government allowing 100 per cent foreign investment in single brand retailing. Haskell, who was the COO for Adidas in China before being transferred to India, is on an agenda to bring Reebok back on a growth track.
Haskell takes over from Claus Heckerott, who has been managing the India business since March last year. Heckerott will take up a new position outside India within the company. Reebok plans to start a comprehensive advertising campaign once the current sale season ends in mid-February. It will run the campaign during the upcoming IPL T20 cricket tournament in April.
Currently there are some 500 Reebok brand outlets in the country and 630 Adidas brand stores.