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Anta Sports posts record $2.07bn half-year revenue, with 2022 Olympic Winter Games bet paying off

Chinese sportswear company Anta Sports Products released its interim results for the first half of 2019 (H1) yesterday, boasting growth of more than 40 per cent and an increase of profit margin by more than 58 per cent.

Ding Shizhong, chief executive of the Anta Group and chairman of its board of directors, attributed the high-growth performance to the brand meeting consumer demands and expectations, as well as investments on product innovation.

He also said that the group would focus on its role as partner for the Chinese Olympic Committee, and emphasised the importance of  the 2022 Olympics to Anta Sports’ overall strategy moving forward. Anta Sports is an official domestic sponsor of the Games.

Their H1 results were also helped by the success of products featuring Olympic and Chinese national team elements, as well as 2022 Olympic Winter Games licenced products such as running shoes, which sold out almost immediately after reaching consumers via their self-operated online business, which grew over 40 per cent in total revenue in H1.

Chip Wilson, the founder of women’s sportswear brand Lululemon, had acquired a 0.6-per-cent stake in Chinese sportswear company Anta Sports, in a deal worth $100m earlier in June.

Wilson and Anta worked together earlier this year when, along with Chinese conglomerate Tencent and Chinese private equity firm FountainVest Partners, they jointly acquired Scandinavian winter sports equipment maker Amer for $5.2bn.

The deal was a significant move to strengthen Anta Sports’ position in China’s winter sports market, with China gearing up to host the winter Olympics for the first time. Amer operates winter sports and outdoor brands such as Atomic and Salomon, as well as Arc’teryx, Peak Performance, Mavic, ENVE, Suunto, Wilson and Precor.

Headquartered in Xiamen, east China’s Fujian province, Anta Sports was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 2007. With these H1 results shareholders were rewarded with an increase of 27.7 per cent in profit, totaling $347m (€312m) in profits attributable to them.

This marks the sixth consecutive year Anta Sports has maintained nearly 20-per-cent growth as the largest sportswear company in China.