Under Armour Inc.’s chief financial officer Chip Molloy told investors at the Goldman Sachs Global Retailing conference Wednesday about the company’s focus on building up its women’s business.
“So, we’ve done a nice job in women’s, but we could do better,” he said. Malloy reminded the group that they had invested in a great team over the past 18 months and that more of the product will be in stores in spring and summer of 2017. He said that it had been well-received by the wholesale partners. He noted that there was now more breadth and depth in the assortment with more stockkeeping units.
Malloy pointed out that there was a real segmentation between good, better and best. “We feel like we’re going to be speaking to her more often through our points of distribution,” he said. He also noted that when it came to footwear, in the past they generally just took a men’s shoe and just put it in women’s sizes. Under Armour now has women-specific footwear that is just hitting the shelves.
Under Armour was also affected by the bankruptcy of The Sports Authority, which had been its biggest customer. Malloy said the situation was starting to clean itself up and by having a strong direct-to-customer channel the company was still able to capture those sales. Also making up for the loss, Under Armour will be in Kohl’s Corporation stores in the beginning of the new fiscal year. Malloy said, “We will rapidly make our way into all 1,000 doors over the course of the early part of next year.”
Under Armour has only been in footwear for seven years, but has quickly become a hot brand and benefited from signing NBA star Stephen Curry. The company took Curry to China this past week and Malloy said they see the region as a place with huge opportunity because the government has started to push athleticism among its population. He also noted that in China, Under Armour is viewed as a performance brand, whereas other sporting goods competitors are seen as a lifestyle brand.
Looking ahead to the rest of the year, Malloy said Under Armour expects 20 percent growth in the third quarter and 24 percent growth for the year. The back half is expected to be lighter due to the loss of Sports Authority.