Steve Madden Outperforms in Q1; Sales & Profits Fly Past Wall Street Expectations

Steven Madden Ltd. is staying in the sweet spot.

The fashion footwear maker today reported first-quarter results that topped expectations across the board, thanks to continued growth at its flagship label — which continues to find favor among female shoppers in search of trendy, affordable wares — as well as rising international demand.

The company posted Q1 sales of $389 million, an improvement of 6 percent over the previous year’s same period and well above Wall Street’s bet for sales of $380 million — evidencing “strong gains” in its wholesale footwear and wholesale accessories businesses.

Its profits advanced 42 percent to $28.7 million, or 50 cents per diluted share. Adjusted profits climbed 13 percent to $31 million, or 54 cents per diluted share, handily topping forecasts for diluted earnings per share of 51 cents.

Chairman and CEO Ed Rosenfeld said the results constituted a “good start” to 2018 for the firm, which also owns Betsey Johnson, Brian Atwood, Dolce Vita and other shoe brands (although the Steve Madden flagship label remains the hero).

“Our on-trend product assortments and speed-to-market capability continue to set us apart from the competition,” Rosenfeld added. “We are particularly pleased with the strong growth we saw in international markets in the first quarter, as the investments we have made in our flagship Steve Madden brand and our international infrastructure bear fruit.”

Overall, retail net sales in the first quarter increased 8.6 percent to $58 million. Same-store sales decreased 1.2 percent, hurt by weakness in the boot category.

For the full fiscal year 2018, the company continues to expect total net sales to increase 5 to 7 percent. Diluted EPS are forecast to be in the range of $2.55 to $2.62, with adjusted diluted EPS from $2.60 to $2.67.

“As we look ahead, we are confident that based on the power of our brands and the strength of our business model, we are well-positioned to drive sales and earnings growth in 2018 and beyond,” Rosenfeld said.

At market open, Steve Madden shares were up more than 1 percent to $46.95.

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