Adidas has opened its new headquarters complex ©Adidas

Sporting goods group Adidas has marked the opening of the latest phase of its €1 billion (£900 million/$1.1 billion) headquarters complex in Germany in the month of the 70th anniversary of its foundation.

The company, which was founded by Adi Dassler, a German cobbler and entrepreneur, was officially entered in the commercial register on August 18, 1949.

Since then, it has grown into a global behemoth with 57,000 employees and annual sales of well over €20 billion (£18 billion/$22 billion).

Adi's son Horst went on to exert a profound influence on the Olympic Movement in the early part of the Samaranch era, when sports marketing was still in its infancy.

The company staged a glitzy ceremonial opening for the new Arena building, which completes development of its 59-hectare sports campus on a former military site in its traditional home-town of Herzogenaurach.

Celebrities attending the event ranged from singer Pharrell Williams to Olympic gold medal-winning biathlete Laura Dahlmeier.

Around 2,000 employees work in the new building, which is said to be visually reminiscent of a football stadium and to appear to hover on 67 filigree columns. 

Adidas has grown into a sportswear giant ©Getty Images
Adidas has grown into a sportswear giant ©Getty Images

The combined cost of this and another recently-constructed building – a restaurant and meeting-room facility called "Halftime" – is put at €350 million (£320 million/$390 million).

Arena is designed by German architectural firm Behnisch Architekten and took 34 months to build.

The Dassler family has longstanding roots in Herzogenaurach, a town of some 23,000 just north of Nuremberg in the German province of Franconia.

Adi Dassler and his brother Rudolf separated their business interests in 1948.

They then proceeded to build separate entities – Adidas and Puma – that have become mainstays of the modern sporting goods industry.

According to Barbara Smit's 2006 book, Pitch Invasion – Adidas, Puma and the making of modern sport, Adi initially filed a registration for a company called Addas.

However, "this was promptly turned down due to the objection of a German children's shoe company with a similar name, so he contracted his name and surname to form Adidas."