PARIS — Maintaining an optimistic outlook despite a dip in net profits in the first quarter, Puma SE said it expects sales growth in the high single-digit range and an increase in net earnings in the mid single-digit percentage range for full-year 2012.
The Herzogenaurach, Germany-based sporting goods giant said first-quarter net income fell 4.9 percent to 73.9 million euros or $96.8 million, impacted by the sluggish economy in Europe.
“After a strong finish in 2011, Puma’s first quarter sales growth could not keep pace with that of recent quarters, translating in weaker bottom line results,” stated Franz Koch, chief executive officer of Puma, Europe’s second-largest sporting goods firm after Adidas. “Our first quarter sales performance indicates that we are facing challenges in Europe. I am confident that the product innovations we have in the pipelines will contribute to achieving our full-year sales and earnings target against the background of this extraordinary sports year.”

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Consolidated sales in the three-month period ended March 31 rose 6.1 percent to 820.9 million euros, or $1.07 billion.

Dollar figures are converted from euros at average exchange rates for the three-month periods ended March 31 for the respective years.
Puma is controlled by by French retail-to-luxury conglomerate PPR, which is slated to report its first-quarter results later today.


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