Puma Joins Exodus From Greece



pumaThe noted athletic shoe and sporting goods company Puma said it’s giving up on Greece too, joining companies such as Coca-Cola – the country’s biggest – and the giant dairy Fage in fleeing the fiscal crisis and high taxes for other lands. Hundreds of other smaller businesses have also abandoned Greece, with many going to neighboring Bulgaria.

The German company is also shutting down operations in Bulgaria as well as Cyprus, where the island’s economy is on the verge of collapse as the country’s leaders are seeking an international bailout similar to Greece’s.

Sportswind will distribute the trademark from now on to the three companies in an agreement which limits the risk in the three countries and in hopes of improving sales.

In announcing its balance sheets for 2012, Puma said it would restructure and close down 90 non-profitable stores and the company is looking toward other emerging markets that don’t have the same financial problems that are besetting a number of Europe’s weaker economies.

Puma announced liabilities of 42.6 million euros for the fourth quarter of 2012 compared to a profit of 33.1 million euros in the same period a year before. Greeks have cut back sharply on spending in the wake of deep pay cuts, tax hikes and slashed pensions demanded by international lenders in return for rescue loans.