Factsheet: Progress on Creating Lasting Change Now

HerzogenaurachJune 14, 2022

Creating Lasting Change Now was implemented by adidas in 2020 to set measurable goals for enhancing diversity, equity and inclusion internally and externally, while simultaneously driving business ownership, accountability and transparency to its employees. adidas today provides an update on its Creating Lasting Change Now commitments, which focused on embracing and enabling greater diversity, equity and inclusion within the company, talent processes and in communities. This includes the following data around hiring and representation aspirations and talent pipeline initiatives.

  • INCLUSIVE HIRING: In 2020, in an effort to reflect the talent in the communities where we live and work, we announced our ambition to increase the representation of Black and Latinx employees in the U.S. by 2025, ranging from 20-23% representation of qualified talent in corporate roles and 12% representation of talent in leadership positions (Director level and above). At that time, Black and Latinx employees represented 12% in corporate roles and 7% in leadership positions. As of the end of Q1 2022, we progressed to 16% (+4%) in corporate roles and progressed 10% (+3%) of leadership roles filled by Black and Latinx employees. The progress we have made can be attributed to embedding more inclusive sourcing and recruiting strategies, including qualified diverse slates and trained recruiters who champion inclusivity. In addition, progress was possible because of the dedication and hard work of all employees involved with the Creating Lasting Change Now: United Against Racism initiatives.
  • INCLUSIVE PIPELINE PROGRAMS: In order to diversify adidas’ talent pipeline, we launched the HBCU strategy, intern partnership with BeyGOOD x Ivy Park and a more inclusive hiring process. As a result, over 93% of all 2022 North America internship positions were filled with talent inclusive of all diverse categories
  • INCLUSIVE INTERN INITIATIVES: We piloted the adidas Unlimited Internship Program at adidas’ North America headquarters in Portland, Ore. To provide a pathway to full time employment opportunities for diverse talent. The program is designed to break down barriers by offering retail associates a path to corporate roles within the company. 90% of interns were converted to corporate roles. The program will be launched in Canada and Europe next.
  • WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP: As part of our global people and “own the game” strategies to embed diversity, equity and inclusion within our leadership teams, adidas has committed to increase the representation of women in leadership positions (Director level and above) globally to more than 40% by 2025. At the end of 2021, that number was 37% for adidas


adidas is working with urgency and purpose to move its culture forward for present and future generations, ensuring equity, inclusion and opportunity for all employees.

  • Equity has been newly added to our diversity and inclusion commitment in 2021. At adidas, we recognize that the legacy of historical events caused an inequitable playing field for marginalized groups. We are committed to eliminating bias and creating an equal playing field for each of our employees, irrespective of their diversity and intersectionality, so that they have the opportunity to perform at their best, be consistently and fairly developed, recognized, and rewarded for their efforts.
  • Appointed Vanessa Abrahams-John as the new Senior Vice President of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion to oversee adidas’ commitments to accelerate DEI within the company.
  • Completed the global Creating a Culture of Inclusion training, in which employees explored critical topics including diversity dimensions, unconscious biases, privilege and microaggressions. 
  • Expanded Employee Relations function globally to build a more consistent approach to managing employee concerns and drive greater accountability within the company’s culture. The company recently named a Vice President of Employee Relations to oversee these efforts. 
  • Upskilled nominated HR Business Partners across different markets through a Workplace Investigations Training facilitated by a third-party consultant.
  • Revamped the U.S. Employee Handbook to reflect the company’s United Against Racism commitments to create a more inclusive culture. Revisions include gender-neutral pronouns throughout. Annually, adidas will review the Employee Handbook to ensure it continues to move its culture forward.
  • Honored Juneteenth by coming together across the company for the week of June 14, 2021. Leaders from adidas’ Progressive Soles and United Voices employee resource groups along with the United Against Racism team hosted virtual events that focused on celebrating Black culture and excellence, educating on the history of Juneteenth and giving back to Black communities. Juneteenth is a paid holiday for all adidas employees in North America. Since June 19 falls on a Sunday this year, employees will observe Juneteenth on Monday, June 20.
  • From 2021 to 2022, implemented global activations representing different diversity dimensions including International Women’s Day, Black History Month, National Hispanic Heritage Month, International Day of People with Disabilities, Mental Health Week and Ramadan & Eid
  • Celebrate Pride Month in June 2022, partnering with queer artist, Kris Andrew Small, launching a capsule collection inspired by the 1969 Stonewall uprising and aimed at bringing greater visibility to the many voices of the LGBTQIA+ community. Internally, adidas partners Athlete Ally & Stonewall joined forces to highlight the people that continue to push society forward with their Impossible is Nothing mentality.   
  • Hosted a Global Week of Inclusion in September 2021 following the first Global Day of Inclusion in 2020. The weeklong companywide event highlighted adidas’ progress toward creating a culture of true belonging and the employees driving meaningful change. The company is preparing for its next Global Week of Inclusion in October 2022.
  • Established a partnership with the Business Disability Forum to provide guidance on how to be an inclusive culture and workplace for people with disabilities. 
  • Hosted 10 1-hour global Inclusivitea events inviting external speakers to share their experiences in creating diversity, equity and inclusion across different work environments.


adidas is reforming its global hiring, talent management and career development processes to ensure fair and equitable hiring across adidas – removing potential hiring biases, increasing representation and creating more accountability and oversight. 

  • Announced a Diversity Dimensions Data project, which will allow employees to voluntarily provide diversity data via a fully anonymous survey. The project is intended to help the company set a baseline of diversity representations so it can use data driven insight to create a holistic DEI strategy for the future, set measurable goals and better understand our areas of opportunities to continue progressing our diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) efforts. 
  • In North America launched a partnership with Valence, a digital community committed to elevating Black professionals in the workplace. A mentorship program for emerging Black leaders supports them in reaching their goals through coaching, community and a MasterClass curriculum.
  • Introduced Coach’s Coffee, a new series that is open to all employees and hosted by the North America senior leadership team where employees from different backgrounds meet to share ideas, offer feedback and connect through meaningful conversations. 
  • Started a global Betterment Through Learning campaign to encourage and empower adidas employees to have a mindset of continuous learning. The campaign is designed to give everyone the same access to growth and development opportunities.
  • Expanded benefits programs to inspire creativity and foster an inclusive and diverse playing field for all adidas employees. Benefits at adidas are flexible and comprehensive and designed to support employees with whatever life presents them. Programs cover time off, family planning, mental health and well-being, financial health and other areas.
  • Launched The Champions Program in North America, comprised of employees across the business who are highly trained to drive consistency, address blind spots and ensure a fair and equitable hiring experience. The second generation of Champions have now completed training to become highly skilled interviewers focused on mitigating bias during the interview process.
  • Created Interview Skills Training and Recruiter and Hiring Manager Playbooks for people leaders to ensure a consistent, equitable and fair candidate experience throughout the interview process. These resources complement a global Inclusive Recruitment Series for all Talent Acquisition team members across the organization focused on identifying, attracting and assessing top diverse talent by strengthening the company’s inclusive processes and opportunities. 
  • In 2022, Talent Acquisition will launch the Inclusive Hiring Program for all hiring line managers to complete in preparation for candidate interviewing and selection. The program will focus on how to remove unconscious bias from the hiring process as well as how to conduct more inclusive hiring overall. 
  • Relaunched the adidas Virtual Café, a global networking tool that unites employees across functions, job levels and geographies. Similarly, the adidas Mentoring Program (amP) brings together employees with diverse backgrounds and experiences in fulfilling, two-way partnerships.
  • Developed a new module within People Leader Essentials (PLE), an interactive series of virtual workshops that equips employees with the skills they need to ignite a winning and inclusive team culture. PLE is open to all employees around the world at all levels. The new module is designed to inspire current and aspiring people leaders to role model the company’s values and behaviors to create a more inclusive culture. 


adidas is investing $120 million to support and empower Black and Latinx communities in the U.S. through 2025 in addition to its existing grassroots initiatives. An additional $3 million will be invested in scholarships. 

  • Awarded $500K across 55 scholars for the 2021-2022 adidas Black & Latinx Community Scholarship, in partnership with the United Negro College Fund. Scholarship renewals will begin this summer for the 2022-2023 academic year. adidas is committed to contributing a total of $3 million in scholarship funds by 2025.
  • Launching Cultivate & B.L.O.O.M. (Building Legacies out of Movements), a nine-month social impact accelerator for entrepreneurs working to address health, wealth and access to sport in Black and Latinx communities. adidas is committing a total of $1M in funding for participating organizations in 2022, along with programming and mentorship opportunities created in partnership with Impact Hub and
  • Supporting the 2022 Black Ambition Prize cycle. Founded in 2020, the endeavor funds ventures in consumer products and services, media and entertainment, healthcare, technology and Web 3.0. Black Ambition awarded 34 grants during the 2021 prize cycle ranging from $15K to $1M. Applicants for the 2022 prize can win up to $1M for the Black Ambition Prize and $100K for the HBCU Prize, as well as access to mentorship, resources and the Black Ambition Network. In 2022, adidas partnered with Black Ambition to host a local Inglewood Prize and a week of immersive workshops that championed community, growth and connection to coincide with the Super Bowl. adidas has committed $10 million through 2025 to continue to accelerate the Black Ambition mission.
  • Committed $10 million through 2025 to fund BeyGOOD partner social programs, organizations and initiatives that help bring equity to those disproportionately impacted by social and racial injustice. BeyGOOD and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) have partnered to create the Black-Owned Small Business Impact Fund to assist small business in communities that have been directly impacted by the recent events across the country. In 2021, $1.5M was donated to continue this work. Additionally, action was taken to offer emergency relief to communities impacted by winter storms in Texas and surrounding areas. In 2022, adidas is supporting the inaugural year of adidas x BeyGOOD Internship, placing six interns to work across Ivy Park.
  • Co-created a virtual Wellness Retreat in partnership with Appetite for Change, a long-term partner that is dedicated to removing barriers to fresh food in Minneapolis. The Wellness Retreat, hosted by wellness facilitator Alli Simon, was a moment for healing and support following recent trauma in Minneapolis communities, and provided an intimate space for Appetite for Change participants and their partner orgs. 
  • Partnering with, a community for Black creativity and news, to launch the second cohort of the Growth Fellowship, a program which empowers Black entrepreneurs. The Growth Fellowship launched in 2021 with a cohort of 13 entrepreneurs. The 2022 program beginning this June has received over 500 applications.
  • Continued advancement of the Cornerstone initiative, prioritizing access and support for retailers serving Black and Latinx communities. In 2021, adidas supported 45 retailers in activating in their community during Cultural Heartbeats as well as across key commercial moments. adidas will continue to provide knowledge-share opportunities, connecting retailers to industry experts throughout the year.
  • Beta launch of adidas Community, a digital network and resource using entertainment and education to create opportunity, access and impact for the next generation of pioneers and rulebreakers. Co-created curriculum and experiences with a host of community architects across sport, creativity, business and purpose.
  • Sustained programming through adidas Legacy, a basketball platform built for underserved communities designed to unite, empower and inspire the next generation of creators. Servicing 30 schools in NYC, LA and Chicago.
  • Continued to support Sound Labs, a music and arts incubator dedicated to breaking down barriers to creative industries servicing three schools in NYC, LA & Chicago. Sound Labs alumni designed the music score for adidas Community curriculum videos.
  • Sustained S.E.E.D. (School for Experiential Education in Design), a strategic pipeline to welcome new talent into the brand and the industry. S.E.E.D. is a two-year program at the adidas Brooklyn Creator Farm in partnership with Pensole Academy. The class of 2022 will be comprised of BIPOC female creators, and alumni from the inaugural class of 2020 will transition into full time roles at adidas.


In collaboration with employees and external partners, adidas is setting new standards to drive business oversight, accountability and transparency

  • Launched the adidas Global DEI Council, comprised of a group of diverse cross-functional leaders responsible for strategic initiatives focused on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in adidas’ workforce, workplace and marketplace. The Council, which was previously known as the Global Committee to Accelerate Inclusion and Equality, provides regular updates to the Board and aims to create transparency for all employees via internal communication. 
  • The United Against Racism Accountability Councils provide oversight and acceleration for all UAR hiring ambitions, policies and commitments. The Councils played an active role during the company’s Global Week of Inclusion and update the Board on local topics.