Joining many other sports brands that have their European hub in the Netherlands, Mizuno has established a new company for its European business, Mizuno Europe B.V., headquartered in the Dutch city of Rotterdam. The new company, which is a 100 percent subsidiary of Mizuno, will begin operations on Jan. 1, 2021. All European local entities will be reorganized into subsidiaries of Mizuno Europe B.V. by 2022.
Up until now, Mizuno’s European operations have had ”a complex organizational structure,” as the company described it in its press release, which is a mix of Mizuno’s overseas branches (U.K., Netherlands, Germany, France, Sweden, Denmark) and Mizuno subsidiaries (Italy, Spain, Norway). Many European operations have been led by the subsidiary in the U.K., where golf is important.
The current structure can be challenging in terms of faster and efficient management decisions, according to the company, particulartly in view of Mizuno’s particularly strong recent growth in the region and its expansion into other categories including running, indoor games like handball and the development of its apparel business.
Mizuno has reached an annual turnover of around 15 billion yen (€118m-$145m). The company noted that its European sales of golf and running products jumped by 117 percent between July and September, as compared to the same period a year ago, as these two sports have been spared from the Covid-19 epidemic.
Mizuno will take the opportunity of the establishment of Mizuno Europe to first transfer control of its French branch operations to a new French subsidiary, Mizuno France, in January 2021. The control of the other European branch operations will be transferred to subsidiaries in 2022, and all these entities will be subsidiaries of Mizuno Europe.
Mitsuhiro Okamoto, who has been named president of Mizuno Europe, said that this reorganization will be used by the company to promote a stronger and more direct approach to European consumers. In addition to competition sports, the company expects to strengthen its approach to the lifestyle market, he added.