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Germany: Adidas boss criticises Olympics protestors

Date: 3 May 2008

Herbet Hainer, the CEO of Adidas, has said that he does not regret sponsoring the Olympic Games, and criticised pro-Tibet protestors that tried to disrupt the progress of the Olympic torch.

In an interview with Spiegel, he said that although protestors had every right to proclaim their political views, he did not believe they had the right to disrupt the torch procession or to try to extinguish the flame. Adidas is sponsoring 16 national teams for the Olympics, including China.

"The Olympic Games have been a part of our brand for years," he said. The company would resist the effort made by campaigners to drag the company into politics.

Asked about whether the company had suffered damage to its reputation, he said "We've had more e-mail complaints in recent days about the use of kangaroo leather in our shoe products than about China."

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