Reebok to lay off 150 before acquisition by Authentic Brands Group

Reebok will "lay off about 150 people" before Authentic Brands Group is expected to become its new corporate owner, according to Anissa Gardizy of the BOSTON GLOBE. Adidas five months ago announced plans to sell Reebok for about $2.5B to ABG. Reebok's sale from Adidas to ABG is scheduled for Feb. 28, and Reebok President Matt O’Toole said that the layoffs would "take effect at the end of February." A Reebok spokesperson said that the "'majority' of cuts would affect employees in Massachusetts." O’Toole said that layoffs are "necessary to support an 'entirely different operating model'" under ABG. Gardizy notes despite the job cuts, ABG is "already charting plans for Reebok to grow." It has "signed agreements in several countries to manage Reebok sales" and also "inked a deal with a major retailer to expand Reebok’s presence in North America and Europe starting in the fall." SPARC Group -- a joint venture between ABG and Simon Property Group -- will "license and operate Reebok" in the U.S. and also "oversee the newly named Boston hub, or 'Reebok Design Group'" (BOSTON GLOBE, 1/25).

SBJ Morning Buzzcast: July 7, 2022

Talking points from Sun Valley; Pac-12 retains Sports Media Advisors; Oak View Group to sell Top Golf national sponsorships and Rapino remains influential with new deal at Live Nation

SBJ Unpacks: LIV Golf tees off in Portland

Ahead of the PGA Tour’s John Deere Classic in Illinois and LIV Golf Invitational Portland, SBJ’s Josh Carpenter, and David Rumsey spoke with Sports Illustrated's Bob Harig and Brendan Porath of The Fried Egg to discuss the current state of golf.

SBJ Spotlight: TikTok’s threat to traditional sports media

While tech companies are consumed with finding ways to compete with TikTok, almost no one in conventional media “spends any time talking about it,” said Recode senior correspondent Peter Kafka in an Spotlight interview with SBJ’s John Ourand. “To me, that’s just an obvious disconnect.” Kafka authored a recent column headlined, “It’s TikTok’s world. Can TV live in it?” He said the main response to TikTok’s growth from traditional media execs has been to “punt and hope it’s someone else’s problem a quarter from now or two years from now.” But Kafka said that ignores the trend of conventional broadcast audiences growing older while a billion younger consumers spend most of their media time watching short video after short video. “If you’re in the business of getting anyone under the age of 30 to look at what you’re putting on a screen, you have to think about the fact that you’re probably asking them to put down TikTok and watch your thing instead,” said Kafka. “That’s a very difficult ask. … [TikTok] is insanely addictive.”

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