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In 1949, a German cobbler named Adolf Dassler founded a sports shoe company. Dassler named the company Adidas, taking the “Adi” from Adolf and the “Das” from Dassler. The company rapidly went from strength to strength, and soon became one of the world’s most dominant sporting equipment manufacturers. In 2010, 69 countries across the globe were involved in producing Adidas goods.
Africa has 24 Adidas factories. Of that number, 18 factories are in South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland, and 3 factories are on the islands of Madagascar and Mauritius. The remaining 3 factories are in North Africa: 2 in Egypt and 1 in Tunisia.
Asia is home to more Adidas factories than any other continent. According to the Adidas Group, 27 percent of all the company’s factories are located in China. China has 337 factories, followed by India with 99, Indonesia with 79 and Vietnam with 76. Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Cambodia, Pakistan and the Philippines all have between 10 and 60 factories. The remaining Adidas manufacturers, all of which have fewer than 10 factories, are Bangladesh, Hong Kong, Laos, Macao, Malaysia, Singapore and Sri Lanka. Russia has seen a decline in factory numbers, dropping from 10 in 2008 to 4 in 2010. The Middle Eastern nations of Turkey, Israel and Jordan account for 15 factories -- 13 in Turkey alone.
Australia and New Zealand
Both Australia and New Zealand have seen a decline in factory numbers. Australia had 9 factories in 2008, rising to 10 in 2009, but dropping to only 3 in 2010. New Zealand had 4 factories in 2008 and 5 in 2009, but only 1 in 2010. This decrease is the result of a consolidated sourcing approach with increased dependence on foreign imports leading to a reduced local supply chain, according to the Adidas Group.
Adidas factories are spread throughout Europe. Germany has the most factories, with 23 in 2010, an increase from 13 in 2008. Italy, Spain and the U.K. are the only other nations to reach double digits. Sweden, Denmark and Finland account for 9 factories -- 7 in Sweden alone. Eastern and Central Europe both contribute, with factories in Belarus, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia and the Ukraine. In Southeastern Europe, Adidas factories are located in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Romania and Macedonia. The remaining factories are in France, Greece, Portugal and Switzerland.
The Americas are home to 215 Adidas factories. In North America, the United States has 71, followed by Canada with 29 and Mexico with 19. The Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua all have fewer than 5 factories. Brazil is the king of Adidas production in South America, with 50 factories in 2010, up from 27 in 2008. Argentina has 19 factories, up from 9. Chile, Colombia, Paraguay and Peru all have fewer than 5 factories.
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- "The Manufacturing Practices of the Footwear Industry"; S. Van Dusen; 1998
- Oxfam Australia: Inside Adidas' Indonesian Factories
Anthony Grahame has been a writer for more than 15 years. He began writing professionally online in 2008. He has a degree in English literature from the University of Sussex and is an experienced traveler and travel writer. His work has been published on a variety of well respected websites including "Living in Peru".