Ralph Lauren Misses Estimates, But Expects Pick-Up

Polo Ralph Lauren S/S 2013 campaign | Source: Ralph Lauren

NEW YORK, United States — Ralph Lauren Corp on Thursday reported sales that fell below its own projections, hurt by fewer deliveries to European department stores, but gave a fiscal year forecast that suggests it expects its overall business to pick up.

Shares, which hit a 52-week high on Wednesday, fell 4 percent to $181.00 from $188.06 in premarket trading.

The fashion company, known for its namesake brand as well as others such as Club Monaco, said net revenue, including licensing revenue in the fourth quarter that ended March 31, rose 1.3 percent to $1.64 billion, a bit below Wall Street projections for $1.7 billion.

In February, Ralph Lauren had forecast revenue would be up by a mid single-digit percentage.

Ralph Lauren gets about half of its business from wholesale orders to retailers such as department store chain Macy’s Inc . Wholesale sales fell 4 percent in part because of fewer orders to Europe and the discontinuation of its American Living brand, which J.C. Penney Co Inc used to sell.

At Ralph Lauren’s own stores open at least a year, which generate about half of sales, revenue was up 7 percent.

For the fiscal year that began last month, Ralph Lauren forecast company-wide revenue will rise 4 percent to 7 percent in the new fiscal year.

Net income rose to $127.2 million, or $1.37 per share, from $94.4 million, or 99 cents per share a year earlier. Excluding charges associated to its discontinuation of its Rugby brand, Ralph Lauren had a profit of $1.41 per share, better than the $1.30 Wall Street had expected, as the company benefited from lower cotton costs.