Nestled inside the nearly 400,000 square-
foot campus that makes up adidas Global Headquarters in Herzogenaurach Germany
is a place so exclusive and so special very few people will ever get to
go beyond its doors. Home to roughly 80,000 products, each one tells a
different story from the past. Each box is a time capsule from some of the most
iconic moments in the company’s 70-year history. [Spencer] What an amazing archive you have here. [Sandra] Thank you very much.
[Spencer] How did this all start? [Sandra] So Adi Dassler was born in 1900 here in Herzogenaurach and actually he was a trained baker, but he was always passionate about sports and about shoes,
and so he founded a company called Gebrüder Dassler Schuhfabrik here in Herzogenaurach
together with his brother in 1924. And after they broke up in 1948 after the
Second World War Adi Dassler founded a new company called addas
because he made an abbreviation of his first name and his second name and
made addas out of it, but there was litigation going on with the Frankfurt
shoe company called Adda Adda and said no it’s not allowed that he register this
new company, so he took his nickname and that’s how adidas was born. [Spencer] So how important was history to Adi [Sandra] It was very important to Adi, because
after the athletes wore his shoes there was one thing, he took them back. He
wanted to improve the shoes but afterwards it was also that he had like
this big win for this company with the athletes and he was in very close
connection with most of the athletes, they were friends for him, so that’s why he
also had a sport shoe museum starting in 1970 down at the Adi Dassler platen
where the production place was formerly. And he took most of the
shoes that he got back from the athletes on the one side to improve those shoes
to learn from those shoes but also that he was in close relationship with most
of the athletes. [Spencer] So I understand that Adi playtested a lot of the product that he
made; what are some of the sports that he played? [Sandra] He played a lot of sports. Of
course he played football, but he was also interested in winter sports, so he
did a lot of ski jumping when he was young but also track and field, so
Adi Dassler was doing most of the sports himself. [Spencer] So when did adidas
first start making tennis shoes? [Sandra] Quite early already. So in 1950 we have the first model of a
tennis shoe called Modell Nüsslein that was invented together with a German
tennis player called Hans Nüsslein. So it was invented by adidas Germany but
also adidas France was very important for the development of new tennis silhouettes. Also women have always been very important for adidas, so this is
not only one of the first colored shoes for the white sport tennis, but also was
developed together with Billie Jean King to feature the women’s needs for tennis.
So this is the first women’s tennis shoe that was invented by adidas France. [Spencer] And what about this bad boy? [Sandra] So this is one of the iconics that we still have today
and it was actually invented also by adidas France for a French tennis player, so
that’s why you can read here the name Hyke and it was changed in 1973 to
the Stan Smith, a very known tennis player for the US and also very
important is it also gave some color to the white sport tennis as well, with the
green heel over there and it’s like derby cut and it was played by Stan
Smith in most of his victories. [Spencer] From the greatest moments at the
Olympics, the World Cup, tennis, and every sport played by athletes all over the globe, adidas has been there. Seventy years of memories, creativity, and innovation now rest quietly on these shelves
awaiting the next 70 years of greatness.

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Dennis Veasley

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