Puma’s Sustainability: CSR/ESG & Stakeholders

Puma corporate social responsibility, CSR, ESG, environmental, social, governance, sporting goods business sustainability analysis case study
A Puma shoe. Puma’s corporate social responsibility and environmental, social, and corporate governance programs revolve around sustainability that satisfies multiple stakeholder groups. (Photo: Public Domain)

Puma’s programs for corporate social responsibility (CSR) and environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) goals ensure business sustainability and satisfactory stakeholder management. These CSR and ESG programs target industry and market trends that shape stakeholders’ perceptions and decisions about the sporting goods firm and its products. These programs for business ethics and corporate citizenship align with Puma’s mission statement and vision statement. These corporate statements establish leadership and sustainability as the company’s priorities. Also, these CSR and ESG programs strengthen the brand and the other competitive strengths examined in the SWOT analysis of Puma. Thus, effective stakeholder management, sustainability, and related CSR/ESG programs support competitiveness in the sporting goods industry.

Brand value linked to sustainability and CSR/ESG programs provides support for competitive advantages against Puma’s competitors, such as Nike, Adidas, ASICS, New Balance, and Under Armour. These companies’ aggressive strategies for business, marketing, and sustainability contribute to the strong competitive pressure in the sporting goods industry. These firms compete for better results, including sustainability in business performance, to enhance the attractiveness of their shoes, apparel, equipment, and accessories. Thus, competition pushes Puma to continue improving its programs for corporate social responsibility and environmental, social, and corporate governance strategy.

Puma’s CSR/ESG Priorities

Puma’s sustainability is at the center of its CSR/ESG efforts. Sustainable business is a long-term strategic objective in making the company a leader in the sporting goods industry. The following programs are the top priorities in Puma’s CSR/ESG strategy:

  1. Human rights audits
  2. Environmental compliance
  3. Climate action and climate transition plan

Human Rights Audits. Puma performs regular human rights audits of companies and other organizations involved in its supply chain. For example, the sportswear company works with the standards of the Fair Labor Association, as well as the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, to ensure that suppliers satisfy human rights standards while achieving sustainable business practices. This priority for human rights also influences the traits of Puma’s business culture (company culture), which promotes wellbeing in the workplace. With this holistic effect of human rights principles, Puma’s CSR/ESG strategy supports sustainable business by addressing the interests of human resources as stakeholders in the sporting goods business.

Environmental Compliance. This priority revolves around the circularity of Puma’s business and products. The company’s CSR/ESG objectives for circularity include product take-back (collection and processing of end-of-life sporting goods), production waste reduction, and use of recycled materials. Strengthening its circularity, Puma expects its corporate social responsibility strategy to reduce and minimize the environmental impact of the business, inclusive of the supply chain, design, production, distribution, sales, and other areas. The ESG programs and initiatives for circularity lead to an overall decrease in the amount of waste materials resulting from Puma’s business. These green programs also improve the company’s sustainability. For example, recycled materials integrated into new products can improve the long-term sustainability of the business, as well as the sporting goods industry, especially in terms of access to adequate input materials for production.

Climate Action & Climate Transition. Puma focuses on reducing emissions and increasing renewable energy use as CSR/ESG contributions to addressing climate issues. This two-pronged approach leads to minimized negative impact on climate. For example, Puma’s emission reduction in its own operations and its supply chain directly addresses climate targets. On the other hand, increasing the use of renewable energy in the company’s operations and the operations of suppliers indirectly reduces the climate impact of the business through energy consumption. Puma’s sustainability goals encompass core suppliers to maximize the benefits of this CSR/ESG strategy in the sporting goods industry and beyond.

What do these CSR/ESG priorities mean for Puma’s stakeholder management and business strategies?

Puma stakeholders’ interests are addressed through the company’s CSR/ESG programs. These interests include business sustainability, support for human resource development and work-life balance, and environmental protection and conservation. Also, the programs for human rights can be considered as Puma’s response to stakeholder concerns about the ethics of the industry’s overseas manufacturing, pertaining to fair labor practices and human rights protection.

The priorities in the company’s CSR/ESG strategy are expected to last, considering their significance to business competitiveness and long-term success. Competitiveness is a driving force behind the company’s efforts for sustainability and other corporate citizenship goals. For example, higher sustainability can lead to a stronger brand, which enhances the success rate of Puma’s generic competitive strategy and intensive growth strategies. Similarly, the success of these ESG/CSR programs can boost the effectiveness of Puma’s marketing mix (4Ps), particularly in terms of public relations for brand and corporate image reinforcement.

Human rights audits, environmental compliance, and climate action are CSR/ESG priorities that lead to the satisfaction of many of Puma’s stakeholders. For example, human rights audits deal with the interests of workers, as well as customers who want to support ethical sporting goods businesses. Also, environmental compliance and climate action address the interests of communities, governments, and other stakeholder groups concerned with the sustainability and ecological impact of business, such as sportwear manufacturing. Because of these priorities, Puma’s stakeholder management connects with the ecological interests of various stakeholder groups.


  • Delgado-Ceballos, J., Ortiz-De-Mandojana, N., Antolín-López, R., & Montiel, I. (2023). Connecting the sustainable development goals to firm-level sustainability and ESG factors: The need for double materiality. Business Research Quarterly, 26(1), 2-10.
  • Orunbayev, A. (2023). Globalization and sports industry. American Journal of Social Sciences and Humanity Research, 3(11), 164-182.
  • Puma – Circularity.
  • Puma – Climate.
  • Puma’s Sustainability Approach.
  • Siyahhan, B. (2023). Stakeholders and corporate social responsibility: What makes firms tip over to CSR investments? Managerial and Decision Economics, 44(3), 1436-1453.