The performance of Jamaican track star Usain Bolt in Daegu has bolstered Puma's third-quarter profits, the global athletics brand said in its September earnings report.
Puma net earnings remained flat at €81.7 million but sales increased 10.2 per cent to €841.6 million due, in part, to Bolt's performance and Faas, a Jamaican-branded shoe. The company said sales in Asia and Latin America were particularly higher over the review period, rising by 16.4 per cent.
"The running category in particular grew significantly, boosted by Usain Bolt's spectacular performances at the Track & Field World Championships in Daegu and by the lightweight concept which includes our best-selling Puma Faas range," said the quarterly report released October 25.
Footwear accounts for roughly half of Puma's total external sales and apparel about one-third.
"Puma posted a very solid sales performance for the fifth-consecutive quarter," said Franz Koch, CEO of Puma. "This underpins our five-year growth strategy, which is already delivering results. After a strong performance in the first nine months of this year, we are now approaching our sales target of €3 billion for the full year, and despite continuing cost pressures we maintain our forecast of an improvement in net earnings in mid single-digits."
The Faas sneaker recently launched a new international ad campaign in which Bolt and No Maddz jog along the Palisadoes road in Kingston. Both personalities are also showcased heavily on the Puma Faas site.
Bolt, who won gold in the 200 metres at Daegu, last year signed a four-year deal with Puma for an undisclosed sum. Puma stressed that it was by far the largest ever given to a track-and-field athlete. Unconfirmed estimates value the deal close to US$10 million (J$860 million) per year.
Bolt became the world 100- and 200-metre record-holder at the 2008 Olympics Games. Puma said it spent the last decade studying what makes Jamaicans fast runners.