Adidas says supply chain problems to rein in sales growth

 Publish date: Wed, 13 Mar 2019, 3:24 PM

HERZOGENAURACH, Germany: Adidas expects supply chain issues to hit its sales growth in the first half of the year, particularly in North America, while it hopes to return to growth in Europe, where Nike is challenging the German sportswear brand.
Nike has been regaining ground, helped by a steady stream of new product launches and a strong showing by Nike-sponsored teams at the soccer World Cup, after several years when Adidas ate into its home market of North America.
Adidas said currency-neutral sales growth would slow to between 5 and 8 per cent in 2019, from 8 per cent in 2018, with a 1-2 per cent reduction coming from the supply issues that mean it is struggling to meet strong demand for mid-priced apparel.
Adidas said it expected to return to growth in Europe in the course of 2019, forecasting a slight increase in currency-neutral revenues for the region after a 6 per cent decline in the fourth quarter.
Overall, fourth-quarter sales rose by a currency-adjusted 5 percent to €5.234 billion ($5.91 billion), versus average analyst forecasts for 5.2 billion, while attributable net profit came in at 108 million, versus consensus for 88 million.
Adidas saw strong growth in “sport inspired” styles, and in training and running in the quarter, but a strong decline in soccer, where it benefited a year earlier from sales of team jerseys in the run-up to the World Cup.
German rival Puma saw its shares tumble last month when it gave a conservative forecast for 2019, predicting sales growth of about a currency-adjusted 10 per cent. 
 - Reuters
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