adidas today announced the completion of the first tranche of its current multi-year share buyback program announced in March 2018. Between March 22, 2018, and December 4, 2018, the company bought back 5.1 million shares, corresponding to 2.5% of the company’s share capital, for a total consideration of € 1 billion. The average purchase price per share was € 196.45.
Under the current program, adidas plans to buy back own shares for up to € 3.0 billion in total until May 2021. The buyback program, which the company intends to continue with a second tranche in January 2019, complements adidas’ stated policy to pay an annual dividend to shareholders in the range of 30% to 50% of net income from continuing operations. Taking into consideration the dividend payment of € 528 million for the financial year 2017 which was made in May, the total amount of cash the company returned to its shareholders in 2018 was more than € 1.5 billion.
Our strategy ‘Creating the New’ includes a strong commitment to returning cash to our shareholders, through both dividends and share buybacks. In 2018 we clearly delivered on this promise once again.
As previously announced, adidas intends to cancel the majority of the repurchased shares. A total of 8.8 million treasury shares, which resulted from the current and the previous buyback program, were cancelled in October, reducing the company’s share count and stock capital correspondingly.