PUMA values its relationship with Jamaica says company head
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Thursday, March 1, 2012 – The decision by PUMA to sponsor the Jamaican Amateur Athletic Association (JAAA) since 2002 has paid off well for the athletics brand since Jamaican track and field star Usain Bolt burst on the international scene.
Puma sponsors the JAAA as well as golden boy Bolt in a relationship worth millions of dollars for both Jamaican athletics and Puma. Now, Jochen Zeitz, executive chairman of PUMA, will be coming to Kingston at month-end to provide insight on the lucrative arrangement and future plans. He will address an event organized by Whisky Productions with the support of National Commercial Bank at the Wyndham Hotel, New Kingston.
In its 2011 group management report released last month, the company said "impressive successes", such as that of the Jamaican team and superstar Usain Bolt in the IAAF World Athletics Championships in South Korea, allowed it to grow while significantly increasing "brand desirability" over the period under review.
"As the supplier for Usain Bolt - currently the world's fastest man - and the Jamaican team, Puma once again highlighted its position as one of the leading running brands," stated the report. Revenues rose by 10 per cent to 1.5 billion euros in Puma's Footwear segment, which represented 51.2 per cent of consolidated sales in 2011. Puma during the year reported that its Running category, in particular, was growing significantly, boosted by top selling shoe Puma Faas, a lightweight neutral racer for tempo runs and racing that was endorsed by Bolt in an advertisement campaign.
In August 2010, Olympic gold medalist Bolt renewed his contract with PUMA until the end of 2013.
While the specific terms of the contract remained undisclosed, the figure was said to be the largest ever given to a track and field athlete, positioning Bolt as a top earner in the world of sport, according to PUMA.
During the Friday, March 30, event Zeitz plans to discuss his long-term relationship between PUMA and Jamaica, the upcoming Olympics, environmental sustainability and the Zeitz Foundation.
"Jamaica is a very special place to me. Year after year I make sure to come for (Boys and Girls Athletic Championships) where extremely talented youth compete and future running stars are made," a press release quoted Zeitz as saying.
"And of course it is also a good excuse to enjoy the beauty of Jamaica and see old friends I have made over the years," he added.
Zeitz is also CEO of the Sport & Lifestyle Division of PPR, a French multinational holding company of Luxury, Sport & Lifestyle brands.
He became chairman and CEO at PUMA some 18 years ago.