Puma Announce Sponsorship of Italian National Team

Puma Ties up the Italians and Looks to Pounce on Umbro

Puma LogoA busy time for football boot maker Puma this week, as it has announced that its sponsorship with the Italian Football Association will continue until after 2014. Puma has sponsored the current World Champions since 2003, and the extension of the deal sees Puma confirmed as the technical sponsor of all on-field, sideline, training and representation apparel and equipment through the upcoming Euro 2008 and World Cup 2010 and past the 2014 World Cup Finals.

Reports have linked Puma with a take-over of English football boot maker and England team sponsor Umbro this week, which would see Puma, the world’s 3rd largest sportswear company, consolidate its market position behind the big two of Nike and Adidas. Puma, who are worth £3.25 billion, look strong enough to devour Umbro, and could pick up the X-Boot III maker as an easy kill for around the £250 million mark.

Cheap Adidas Football Boots anyone?
We could soon be buying our Adidas football boots a lot cheaper, as sporting retail king Mike Ashley has just bought 3% of Adidas. Ashley is the founder of Sports Direct International, and is on a mission to create the largest sports retailer in the world. He dipped into his bulging wallet (he made £929 million when he floated his company) to take a chunk out of Adidas, who are spearheaded by David Beckham, which will help Adidas out as they are still struggling to come to terms with buying Reebok last year!

Nike and Adidas Merger Rumours
The quiet man of the three this week has been Nike, the largest and wealthiest of the bunch. Nike could well launch an ambush of its own, as they have been rumoured to be about to take over Adidas. That would be an amazing story but we are not sure we are ready for a Nike-Adidas combination (imagine a Predator Tiempo) just yet!Do you think this would be good or bad for football boots?

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