Between January and March 2018, the Adidas brand (+11%) recorded double-digit sale increases in the running, football and training categories, as well as at Adidas Originals. Revenues at the Reebok brand are reported to have decreased -3% due to declines in the training and running categories. The sportwear Group says that E-commerce was once again the fastest-growing channel, with sales up +27% in the quarter. In euro terms, the total sales were up +2% in to € 5.548 billion (2017: € 5.447 billion).

Gross margin increased 1.5 percentage points (pp) to 51.1%, driven by pricing and product mix, while the operating margin improved 1.8pp to 13.4% “despite continued brand investments”. Net income from continuing operations grew +17% to €542 million.

On a currency-neutral basis, the combined sales of the Adidas and Reebok brands grew in most geographic regions, most particularly in North America (+21%) and Asia-Pacific (+15%), the latter driven by a +26% increase in Greater China. Latin America also grew at a double-digit rate (+10%), and revenues in Western Europe increased +5%, “in line with the full-year outlook for this market”. Sales in Emerging Markets and Russia/CIS declined -5% and 1-6%, respectively, as a result of the “challenging market conditions” according to the Group.

Adidas says the first quarter results were in line with the guidance and expects overall sales to increase at a rate of around 10% in 2018, on a currency-neutral basis.