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The trainers group says it is in a stronger position than before the pandemic
Thursday 23 Dec 2021 Author: James Crux

Second quarter results published on 20 December from Nike beat expectations as the world’s largest sportswear company benefited from robust demand in its biggest market, North America, and what finance chief Matthew Friend described as an ‘incredible’ Black Friday week.

Revenue and earnings topped Wall Street forecasts in the quarter to 30 November, despite a headwind from supply chain disruption. Chief executive John Donahoe insisted Nike is in ‘a much stronger competitive position’ than it was before the pandemic, which has driven a boom in spending on health and fitness.

Sales in North America grew 12% to almost $4.5 billion year-on-year, though Nike suffered a 20% sales reverse to roughly $1.8 billion in Greater China, where some Western brands are suffering from a consumer backlash amid geopolitical tensions.

Fewer items were sold in China, partially due to lost production caused by Covid-related factory closures in Vietnam and lower available stock. Friend said all factories in Vietnam were now up and running with weekly footwear and apparel production back to around 80% of pre-closure volumes.

Increasingly selling products through its own stores and website to control brand messaging and margin, Nike also reported very healthy digital growth. Donahoe enthused about Nike’s moves into the metaverse, having launched the 3D immersive world of Nikeland on Roblox and recently acquired virtual sneaker company RTFKT.

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