Shares in Adidas rose more than 3 percent on Monday as traders cited market talk that U.S. rival Nike and Japanese sports shoe maker Asics were interested in the German company.
There is the rumor that Asics and Nike are bidding for Adidas, one trader said, adding that the two companies would apparently together bid $15.28 billion for the German sporting goods maker.
Adidas has a market capitalization of $13.5 billion.
But another trader said he did not expect Nike to bid for Adidas and that Asics did not have the financial firepower on its own.
Adidas declined to comment.
Adidas shares rose as much as 3.4 percent to 47.00 euros and were up 1.7 percent at 46.24 euros by 1137 GMT, while Germany's DAX index .GDAXI was up 0.1 percent.
Adidas is the number two in the industry after Nike and a merger could prove to be problematic, industry sources said, as such a tie-up would most likely not get a green light from the relevant authorities.
In October, Nike agreed to buy England soccer-kit maker Umbro in a deal that valued the British sportswear firm at 285 million pounds ($587.7 million).
(Reporting by Eva Kuehnen, Kerstin Leitel, Sitaraman Shankar in London and Christian Kraemer in Munich; Editing by Rory Channing)