Sports companies Nike Inc, Puma AG and Reebok Ltd are campaigning to ban rival Adidas-Salomon AG from using its three-stripe design on uniforms at the 2006 winter Olympics, according to German newspaper Handelsblatt.

The companies have written a letter to the International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge calling for Adidas to be prevented from using the design on its uniforms at the Turin games.

They argue that Adidas should not be exempt from a rule that restricts logo space to 20 square centimetres on the athletes' uniforms.

Adidas has previously been allowed to have its three stripes adorning uniforms as they are seen as design features rather than a brand logo.

The sports giant's rivals, however, say that this exception lets Adidas gain a bigger profile as an Olympic sponsor.

Adidas said it was surprised at the protests, and pointed out that it has provided uniforms featuring the three stripes for 40 years. It maintains that it is part of the clothing's design rather than an actual logo.