NGF TOP 100 BUSINESSES IN GOLF
Kasper Rorsted, CEO
Jeff Lienhart – President, adidas Golf
adidas Golf has a prominent industry presence in both apparel and footwear, and has sponsorship deals with marquee players including major champions Dustin Johnson and Sergio Garcia as well as a growing host of young stars.
Other pro golfers on the adidas roster include Jon Rahm, Xander Schauffele, Collin Morikawa, Daniel Berger and Joaquin Niemann, as well as LPGA standouts Paula Creamer, Jessica Korda and Danielle Kang.
The adidas brand sells sports shoes, apparel, accessories and equipment – more than 850 product units annually, all bearing its iconic three-stripe logo — in 160 countries around the world. The No. 2 sporting goods manufacturer focuses on football, soccer, basketball, running, and training gear and apparel as well as lifestyle goods.
For years, adidas Golf was aligned with equipment manufacturer TaylorMade, but moved back under the bigger adidas umbrella when the company completed the sale of its TaylorMade, Adams Golf and Ashworth brands in 2017 to put more focus on its core business – and perceived higher-growth opportunities – in shoes and apparel.
“The important thing for us is that internally we live out this mantra that we’re ‘born of sport, rooted in golf,’” said adidas Golf President Jeff Lienhart. “This keeps one foot firmly planted in the fact that we’re part of the world’s greatest sport company. But our other foot is firmly in the game of golf and no one around this building or working on the business of golf can forget that’s who we are and the consumer we’re working for.”
adidas Golf has continually shifted to meet trends in the industry and has a segmented product line to address different fashion needs of consumers. In recent years, that has included a variety of lines that can easily be worn both on and off the course.
“There’s a tremendous amount of apparel opportunity around the game, but also away from the game as well,” Lienhart said. “Because as we all know, those passionate about the game itself, it’s a lifestyle. You carry that lifestyle with you whether you’re on or off the course.”
adidas for years was almost synonymous with TaylorMade in the golf world, but is now very much meshing its strategic business plan with the adidas parent company for a focused, clear vision of its future approach. The wealth of resources, such as consumer insight, that the adidas brand offers are significant and adidas Golf will benefit from that.
Since disconnecting from TaylorMade, adidas has been able to partner with a multitude of different athletes regardless of which equipment company they’re aligned with.