Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Puma and Adidas were created by estranged brothers

Puma and Adidas were created by estranged brothers. Their rivalry is detailed in Sneaker Wars: The Enemy Brothers Who Founded Adidas and Puma and the Family Feud That Forever Changed the Business of Sports:

It's a long road between the Nazi spectacle of Adolf Hitler's 1936 Olympic Games in Munich and the media frenzy of David Beckham's 2007 move to Los Angeles, but there has been one constant during the intervening years of athletic history-sports shoes. This book traces the evolution of Gebrüder Dassler, a Bavarian shoe company founded by two brothers whose vicious feud led to the creation of two rival, iconic businesses: Adidas and Puma. Smit, an international business journalist, delivers a fascinating story of the complicated intrigues in the lives of both companies, as well as the founders and their descendants. The tale encompasses almost ever major sports figure in modern times, from Jesse Owens, (who wore Dassler shoes during the 1936 Games, unaware that the two brothers were members of the Nazi Party), to basketball legend Walt Frazier, whose signature Puma "Clydes" sold "well over one million pairs throughout the Seventies," kick starting the sports shoe-as-fashion statement trend. Overall, Smit provides a necessary account of how the growth in sports-related businesses has moved athletics "from jolly amateurism to unapologetic greed."