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adidas-Salomon in 1999: Best operating profit and best IBT in Group history

Sales up 6 percent +++ Gross margin improved +++ Board to propose higher dividend +++ Order backlog growing again

Best operating profit in the history of the Group

Herzogenaurach, 07/02/2000 - Based on preliminary figures, the 1999 adidas-Salomon operating profit of DM 942 million was the best ever recorded in the Group's history. This 16 percent year-over-year improvement is primarily due to the very positive development of net sales and gross profit. Sales increased by 6 percent, growing more strongly than anticipated, to DM 10.5 billion, making it the first time in the history of the Group that sales passed the DM 10 billion mark. Gross margin improved by two percentage points to 43.9 percent. Operating expenses increased by 9 percent to DM 3.7 billion. Best IBT in Group history, strong growth in net earnings In 1999, adidas-Salomon also achieved its best ever IBT (income before taxes). With an improvement of 25 percent to DM 779 million, IBT showed even stronger growth than the operating profit. An increased tax rate and significantly higher minority interests, however, prevented a corresponding increase in net income, which improved by 11 percent to DM 445 million or DM 9.82 (Euro 5.02) per share. This result is in line with the expectations that the Group had been forecasting since May 1999.

Higher dividend to be proposed

The Executive Board will propose a dividend of DM 1.80 or Euro 0.92 per share for 1999. The dividend paid for 1998 was DM 1.65 or Euro 0.84.

Year-over-year improvement in order backlog

Order backlog growth for the adidas brand at year-end showed an increase of 2 percent year-over-year. This represents an improvement compared to the virtually unchanged order backlog at the end of the third quarter and is the first time that a positive growth rate was reported in 1999.

Final full-year results will be released on March 2nd, 2000.