Under Armour drops amid management shake up, lowered expectations
The news follows several downgrades by analysts following the company’s weak quarterly sales, when it cut its fiscal year revenue outlook for the second quarter in a row, citing operational challenges and lower demand in North America.
The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that Under Armour’s chief marketing officer and the head of its women’s business are leaving the company, according to a person familiar with the matter.
Marketing chief Andrew Donkin and Pamela Catlett, SVP and general manager of Under Armour’s women’s and youth categories, will leave later this month after “mutually agreeing to part ways,” according to an internal memo circulated among company leaders Tuesday night.
Donkin joined Under Armour from Amazon (AMZN), while Catlett spent over a decade at Nike (NKE).
Donkin and Catlett are the latest in a series of senior departures at Under Armour, with other recent exits include Ben Pruess, the president of sport fashion.
Additionally, Kip Fulks, a co-founder of Under Armour and widely seen as the deputy to Kevin Plank, the company’s chief executive officer, went on sabbatical last month.
In June, Patrik Frisk was hired as president and chief operating officer, and he has taken over some of Fulk’s responsibilities.
A person familiar with the matter told the Journal that Frisk is “shaking up the company’s leadership team,” and believes more changes may follow.
WEAK REVENUE, LOWERED GUIDANCE
Earlier this week, Under Armour reported third quarter revenue of $1.41B, falling short of analysts’ estimates, though its adjusted earnings per share view beat expectations. The company lowered its expectations for fiscal 2017 EPS to 18c-20c from 37c-40c and cut its revenue guidance to up at a low single-digit percentage rate vs. its previous growth rate view of 9%-11%.
The company said guidance was being lowered to reflect lower North American demand and operational challenges due to the implementation of its enterprise resource planning system and related service levels.
Looking to 2018, Under Armour said initial assumptions include “continued strength across our international [direct-to-consumer] business…contrasted with a difficult environment in our North America wholesale business well into next year.”
CEO Plank added that “against this difficult backdrop, our management team is working aggressively to evolve our strategy and level of execution to proactively address these challenges.”
ANALYSTS LOWER EXPECTATIONS POST-EARNINGS
Following Under Armour’s earnings report, Canaccord, SunTrust and JPMorgan downgraded the stock, while Wells Fargo, FBR Capital, Deutsche Bank, Citi Bernstein and Wedbush all lowered their respective price targets.
Morgan Stanley, which noted that the Q3 report fell short of even the lowest expectations, said this is not necessarily the bottom for the stock.
JPMorgan sees five “red flags” for Under Armour, including North America revenues dropping double digits with a “slow to re-grow” game-plan and international growth moderating. Citi said there is not much to feel positive about, as the stock has been “hammered and downside risk is still present.”
Class A shares of Under Armour (UAA) dropped another 3.7% to $11.60 in morning trading. Year-to-date, shares are down about 60%.
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