Nike First-Quarter Profits Up
Sep. 16, 1999
BEAVERTON, Ore. (AP) _ After a year of cost-cutting in 1999, Nike reported Thursday its earnings were up 22 percent for its first quarter in fiscal 2000, but revenue remained flat for the world's largest maker of athletic shoes and clothing.
The Beaverton-based company posted a profit of $200 million, or 70 cents a share, compared with $164 million, or 56 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Sales were stuck at $2.5 billion, the same level as the first quarter of 1999.
Still, Nike's results were well above the 66 cents a share predicted by analysts surveyed by First Call/Thomson Financial.
``For us, it was a near-great quarter,'' said Nike Chairman Phil Knight.
He said domestic shoe sales showed a 3 percent increase while global sales advanced 4 percent. But Nike clothing sales declined 6 percent overall.
Future orders for delivery between September 1999 and January 2000 were up 2 percent to $3.2 billion from the first quarter of 1999, but domestic orders were down 7 percent. Orders in Europe, a traditionally strong sales area for Nike, were up 15 percent while Asia jumped 37 percent.
Knight said orders were affected by a decision to move from a four-season selling cycle to three seasons, shortening the spring season by a month.
Nike also continued an aggressive $1 billion stock repurchasing effort launched in February 1998, buying back $142 million worth of shares during the first quarter of fiscal 2000.
Nike shares closed up 56 1/4 cents, at $54.75, on the New York Stock Exchange.