NEW YORK, United States — Ralph Lauren Corp. reported quarterly profit that beat expectations as the preppy apparel maker made strides in the important Asian market.
Profit was $1.77 a share when excluding some items, beating even the highest analyst estimate. And while the 2 percent gain in global same-store sales, a key retail metric, was less than the average estimate compiled by Consensus Metrix, the measure was better than expected in Asia.
Ralph Lauren has been on the comeback with re-invigorated products that speak to younger shoppers. It has been pulling away from off-price retail, reducing inventory, cutting costs and refocusing on its own e-commerce business. But it still has more work to do, especially in its home market, where it said it saw softer digital performance in the quarter.
Management’s investment in the digital business is paying dividends, especially overseas. International online sales surged nearly 10 percent last quarter, fuelled by a 22 percent spike in Europe.
Stabilising the “North America business against a more volatile backdrop” is a key goal, President Patrice Louvet said in the statement. Comparable sales there were up just 1 percent — the the robust growth the company would like to see.
The shares jumped as much as 7.8 percent in early trading after the release of quarterly results.
By Kim Bhasin; editors: Anne Riley Moffat and Jonathan Roeder.