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04 Dec 2008

Industry News

Etnies Buys Beer For adidas

Etnies Buys Beer For Adidas 1

Pretty funny story we saw on CNBC. Etnies has decided to throw a xmas party - for adidas employees!


Firms are cancelling holiday parties in this belt-tightening environment. But the Grinches aren't just Wall Street banks. Even Adidas is nixing the eggnog this year. The Portland Oregonian reports Adidas' holiday parties cost the athletic apparel/shoe giant $6.3 million. Those must be some parties. Alas, all the year-end festivities for Adidas employees have been cancelled.

It's not the best of times in retail, especially when you could pay your heating bill for what it costs to buy a pair of Nike shoes.

But one privately-held shoe company is going back to its rebellious skater roots and saying "Bah Humbug!" to the party poopers. Etnies, based in Southern California, is today posting the ad seen here to promote a party it's throwing near Adidas' US headquarters in Portland, Oregon JUST for Adidas employees.

The party is Monday night at "My Father's Place Bar" on Southeast Grand, starting at 7pm and going "until the bar shuts down." Free beer will be flowing, courtesy of PBR (Pabst Blue Ribbon to those of you who drink Chardonnay). Why throw a party for workers at a much larger rival in another state? "Just to have some fun," says Etnies VP Don Brown, a former skateboarding champion, who says the party will cost "probably all of $1,000 dollars."

Gee. Thumb your nose (playfully) at a much larger rival, exploit its belt-tightening, get a lot of press, and only spend $1,000. Not bad. But going after Adidas? Aim high! (By the way, under Oregon law PBR can't give away beer...Etnies is buying it at a discount and then "hosting" the party.)

Will anyone show? I'll have videotape on this story later, both from Etnies headquarters in the OC, and maybe even Adidas HQ in Portland (I hear the Adidas PR team think the ad is the funniest thing its ever seen — wonder if they'll come for the free beer.)

In the upcoming taped piece, you'll learn what to expect from the parties (plural) Etnies is throwing for its own employees this year. (Hint — I learned what "trailer trash tea" is: PBR, ice, and lemon. Nice!) Stay tuned...

04 Dec 2008

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