The German multinational corporation’s decision was made due to ‘financial reasons’, according to a report.
Puma has terminated its sponsorship agreement with the Israel Football Association (IFA) – a decision which will come into effect in 2024.
According to a Tuesday Financial Times report, the German multinational sports corporation’s decision was made for “financial reasons”, as part of Puma’s latest strategy “to become more selective in sports marketing”.
As such, the company will be discontinuing its work with other national sports teams, the FT report added.
Further reports from Al Arabiya News indicate that Puma’s decision was made in 2022.
However, a news update published on Tuesday by the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement, revealed that the corporation was facing “tremendous pressure” to terminate its contract with the IFA, according to leaked messages.
According to their news update, BDS has relentlessly applied pressure on Puma because of its complicity in “supporting Israeli apartheid.”
Al Jazeera reported on Tuesday that Puma first became involved with Israel’s sports sector in 2018 and supplied the IFA with football kits. Since then, Puma has faced criticism due to its links with Israel.
On February 15 2022, the BDS movement reported international demonstrations for the #BoycottPUMA Global Day of Action, which was an international boycott campaign initially launched by a 2019 call to action from more than 200 Palestinian football clubs and sports organisations.
The 2022 #BoycottPUMA protests saw activists from 50 cities across the world demonstrate outside Puma stores, calling on their local communities to shun the brand.
BDS reported demonstrations in Japan, South Africa, the United Kingdom and Malaysia, among many others.
“There’s only one word for apartheid. And that is ‘boycott’,” said one activist in BDS’ 2022 news update.
Pro-Palestinian boycott movements appear to have also taken a toll on other multinational corporations, such as Starbucks and H&M. On November 30, reports from Moroccan news media website Maroc Hebdo emerged that due to a sudden drop in demand, Starbucks and H&M outlets were set to permanently close in Morocco.
Boycott calls have also recently seen fashion brand Zara remove a campaign from its website. The Spanish retailer came under fire for a controversial marketing campaign which showed mannequins wrapped in white shrouds against a backdrop of damaged furniture.
One user took to X, formerly known as Twitter, to call out Zara for its “disgusting” campaign.
“Those images of Palestinians holding their family in white clothe [sic] being mocked like this is beyond hateful. They deserve to fail,” their post added.