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Q4 sales drive up 17.1% at Puma
19
Feb '16
For the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2015 sales at German sports goods and sportswear marketer Puma drove up 17.1 per cent year over year.

In a press release, the company said its sales grew 17.1 per cent over the prior year's fourth quarter to reach €879 million, while currency adjusted sales rose 11.5 per cent.

However, due to adverse currency effects gross profit margin decreased to 42.7 per cent, while EBIT improved slightly to €11 million, because of continued heavy investments in OPEX.

The company further said that during the reporting quarter, strong sell-through of the first Rihanna-inspired footwear ignited Puma's women's business

For full year 2015, Puma sales rose slower at 14.0 per cent year on year and amounted to €3.4 billion, while currency adjusted sales increased 6.5 per cent.

According to Puma, sales growth in 2015 was mainly driven by footwear, running and training categories.

As in the fourth quarter, gross profit margin too slipped to 45.5 per cent for full year 2015, which it also attributed to adverse currency effects.

“OPEX too grew due to higher marketing activities, retail upgrades, and IT investments as well as adverse currency effects; however, EBIT at €96.3 million was in line with guidance,” it stated.

Net earnings for 2015 fell steeply to €37.1 million as against €64.1 million in 2014 and EPS too came in at
€2.48 for 2015 compared to €4.29 in 2014.

“New product launches performed strongly, both in sports performance and lifestyle categories,” the company observed.

The group's working capital increased to €532.9 million as a consequence of sales growth and expanded product availability.

Inventories were up 15.0 per cent year on year in 2015 to €657.0 million, which it said was not only necessary in order to accommodate planned sales growth in 2016, but also driven by higher unit cost.

In the reporting year, trade receivables rose 7.6 per cent over its previous year to €483.1 million, while trade payables reported only a slight increase of 0.9 per cent to €519.7 million.

Puma's free cash flow at end of 2015 came in at a negative €98.9 million as against €39.3 million at year-end 2014, which it attributed to higher working capital requirements related to inventories.

As of December 31, 2015, the company's cash position amounted to €338.8 million compared to €401.5 million at the balance sheet date last year. (AR)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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