This year started very positively for PUMA, with new styles of footwear selling well, apparel continuing to be strong, replenishment orders for both apparel and footwear developing well, and their direct-to-consumer business also performing well,” CEO Bjørn Gulden told investors.

“We would also like to mention that we are extremely happy with the cooperation with our new partner Manchester City and the entire City Football Group. The launch of their kits has been very successful and the initial sales have been higher than we both expected.”

The brand also signed Valencia CF and it will be the official match ball supplier of the Spanish Football League La Liga.

In the second quarter PUMA sales increased 15.7% to € 1.2-bn (currency-adjusted), with sales growing in all regions and product divisions. The gross profit margin improved 49.3% and EBIT increased 39% to €80-m.

This contributed to a 15.5% growth in sales for the first half of the year to €2.5-bn (currency-adjusted) and a 31% improvement in EBIT to €223-m. The company’s net earnings increased from €99-m last year to €144-m and earnings per share increased from €0.30 last year to €0.96.

In the second quarter sales in the Asia/Pacific and Americas regions grew double-digits and in the EMEA region it grew at a high single-digit rate. Apparel and footwear sales grew 22.7% and 14.5% respectively, with accessory sales a more modest 6.3% growth.  All product categories reported growth, with Sportstyle, Motorsport and Golf performing best.

Other relationships that helped drive sales during the second quarter was a strong showing in the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France through sponsorship of quarter finalist Italy and 78 individual players, sponsorship of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations finalist team Senegal, Danny Glover winning the NBA Championship with the Toronto Raptors and the signing of Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola as a brand ambassador.

With this development in the first half-year and the current expectations for the second half, PUMA has slightly adapted its outlook for the full year, expecting revenues to now improve around 13% in constant currency and the full-year EBIT to come in between € 410-m and €430-m.