Amer Sports posts solid fourth quarter, hits annual sales record
Amer Sports on Thursday said it delivered another strong fourth quarter and yearly performance in 2018, posting record sales and profitability for the twelve month period -- the ninth year the Finnish firm has done so.
The Helsinki-based company reported a 10 percent increase in fourth-quarter sales, to 874.2 million euros. Growth was strongest in apparel, up 41 percent following the purchase of Sweden's Peak Performance earlier in 2018. Organic growth was 5 percent, the company stated.
For the quarter, Amer reported that earnings per share excluding IAC (items affecting comparability or items that are not related to normal business operations from Amer Sports' management view including capital gains and losses on business disposals and acquisition and disposal-related costs) totalled 0.53 euros, compared to 0.57 euros. EBIT excluding IAC totalled 96.7 million euros, from 98.1 million euros the prior year.
Commenting on the company’s quarterly performance, Heikki Takala, President and CEO, reinstated his firm's concentration on select sports apparel and equipment, following the recent the acquisition of Peak Performance.
"Growth was strongest in apparel (+41%), boosted by the acquisition of Peak Performance. D2C (+23%) and e-tail (+15%) were again the winning channels, and China (+16%) and USA (+10%) drove geographical growth," said Takala.
"In the fourth quarter, we continued to prepare strategically for a more focused portfolio as we proceeded the Cycling sale process, and in the core business we continued to invest into future growth to ensure a strong pipeline of initiatives for 2019 and beyond."
For the full-year to December 2018, Amer Sports reported net sales of 2.7 billion euros, up 7 percent in local currencies, with organic growth of 4 percent.
For the twelve months, EBIT excluding IAC reached 231.2 million euros compared to 214.4 million euros last year, up 8.6 percent. Earnings per share excluding IAC were 1.23 euros compared to 1.18 euros.
By category, apparel grew to be Amer's largest in 2018, with softgoods accounting for 40 percent of the company's overall sales for the year.
Looking forward, Amer Sports said it will focus on apparel and footwear in 2019, as well as its consumer-direct business in the U.S. and China.
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