PUMA is a German athletic shoe and apparel brand founded in 1948 by Rudolf Dassler. His interest in athletic footwear production began with his return from World War I. The Dassler Brothers began manufacturing shoes from their mother’s laundry business. The shoes were first used in an Olympics event in 1928, and were the first athletic shoes to feature studs and spikes. Women’s 800M competitor Lina Radke-Batschauer was the first athlete to win a gold medal in the shoes. In 1936, the Dassler brothers drove samples to the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, where they persuaded American athlete Jesse Owens to try to the shoes. This represented, in essence, the first athletic sponsorship of an African-American athlete. Owens’ four gold medals from the 1936 Olympics greatly improved the company’s reputation, and athletes around the world were requesting a pair of the Dassler Brothers shoes.