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Origins Of Top Businesses: The Family Fight The Led To Adidas & Puma Shoes

This section of our site is called “Origins Of Top Businesses.”  

It features interesting facts about the early years of well-known businesses.

These facts are given to you for fun and inspiration.
Fun because how many top businesses started out is really surprising.
Inspiring because it will help you as a business owner see that if they can do it, so can you.

Now for today’s facts:

Photo by Wikipedia

This story all starts in a little-known village in Germany: the village of Herzogenaurach.

In that village there was a shoe company run by two brothers.

One brother, the quiet one, was a sports fanatic who spent hours working on shoe designs in his workshop. His name Adolf (Adi) Dassler.

The other brother was an extrovert and he was the salesman of the team. His name was Rudolf Dassler.

The name of their company? Dassler Brothers Shoe Factory.

If this is where the story ended, I wouldn’t be talking about them today.


But something disappointing happened.

The brothers couldn’t stand working with each other. The more their business grew, the more they became frustrated with each other.

They got to a point where they couldn’t agree on anything, but politics was an especially explosive topic between the two.


Finally one day in the mid-1940s, Rudolph had enough and left.

He was so mad he decided to start his own shoe business… across the river from Adolf’s shop.

The original names for the shoes that each company sold were created by using the first two letters of their first names: Addas and Ruda.


But Adolf had a problem with the name he chose. There was a kid’s’s shoe brand that had the name Addas.

Adolf decided to add an “i” to his shoe.


Adolf’s shoe became known as Adidas.

Rudolph must have realize “Ruda” wasn’t a very catchy name, so his shoe became known as Puma.

The rest is history.


Source: Wikipedia article & DailBeast/Newsweek article

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About Scott Aughtmon (1872 Articles)
I’m author of the book 51 Content Marketing Hacks. I am also a regular contributor to and I am the person behind the popular infographic 21 Types of Content We Crave. I’m a business strategist, consultant, content creation specialist, and speaker. I’ve been studying effective marketing and business methods (both online and offline) since 1999. ===> If you would like to see ways that we could work together, then please click here to learn more.