Skechers Pulls Off Sales Growth Despite Negative Chatter

Shares for Skechers USA Inc. are climbing in after-hours trading today on the heels of the firm’s announcement of better-than-expected, fourth-quarter sales.

The Manhattan, Calif.-based firm said today that its Q4 revenues advanced 5.8 percent year-over-year, to $764.3 million, blowing past forecasts predicting revenues of $723.7 million. Fourth-quarter comparable sales also rose 3.6 percent, while market watchers predicted flat results. Annual net sales increased 13.2 percent, to $3.6 billion.

Net income, however, sank 77 percent year-over-year, to $6.7 million, or 4 cents per diluted share, missing analysts’ bets for diluted earnings per share of 9 cents. For the full year, net income rose 5 percent, to $243.5 million, or $1.57 per diluted share.

Skechers COO and CFO David Weinberg said the company’s international business continues to be the major source of much of its growth over the past few quarters.

“The strong quarterly growth was primarily the result of a 17.1 percent increase in our international wholesale business, led by China with an increase of 48.5 percent.” Weinberg said in a release. “In addition, our global company-owned retail business grew 13.9 percent on a store base of 571 at year end.”

Looking ahead, Skechers expects net sales in the range of $1.050 billion to $1.075 billion and earnings per share of 50 cents to 55 cents in the first quarter of 2017. Skechers also predicted flat to slightly positive sales in its domestic wholesale business and increases in its international business and company-owned retail stores.

“We ended 2016 with positive domestic and international backlogs and the highest incoming order rate for our domestic wholesale, subsidiary and distributor businesses in our history for both the fourth quarter and full year,” Weinberg said. “Already in 2017, we’ve achieved mid-single-digit comps in January and high single-digit comps for the first week of February in our company-owned retail stores on a worldwide basis.”

As of 4:35 p.m. ET, Skechers shares had advanced 7.5 percent in after-hours trading, to $23.28.

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