Full-year profit rose at Asics Corp., thanks to continued momentum in running throughout 2012.
For the year ended March 31, net income increased 9.2 percent to 13.77 billion yen, or $139.5 million at current exchange, from 12.62 billion yen, or $127.8 million.
Net sales advanced 5 percent to 260.2 billion yen, or $2.64 billion, from 247.79 billion, or $2.5 billion.
The Hyogo, Japan-based firm noted it will pursue continuous growth by expanding its businesses in North America and Latin America, which is a rapidly growing market, while reinforcing and enlarging its base in Japan.
By region, East Asia performed best, with revenue surging 31.3 percent. In the Asia-Pacific market overall, sales increased 14.5 percent, owing to strong demand for running shoes in Australia and a shift in sales to Southeast Asia from Japan.
In a separate statement, Asics America Group, which includes the U.S., Brazil and Canada, said net income rose 16.1 percent, driven by strong sales in the footwear category, including the newest addition, the Asics Natural 33 collection.
Additional growth in emerging categories such as tennis and penetration in apparel and accessories also contributed to results, putting Asics America on track to reach its billion-dollar sales goal by 2015, it added.
Asics said its outlook remains uncertain mainly because of the prolonged sovereign debt problems in Europe. The Japanese economy, however, is showing signs of recovery based on optimism for economic policies following the election of a new administration, but it faces other headwinds such as decreased exports, deflation and other factors.
The Asics Group forecasts a net income of 13.5 billion, or $136.7 million, in the fiscal year ended March 31, 2014, on consolidated net sales of 305 billion, or $3.09 billion.