Lululemon Turnaround No Longer in Downward Dog

Chris Lange

Lululemon Athletica Inc. (NASDAQ: LULU) updated its guidance for its fourth quarter and the 2014 fiscal year. Stronger sales over the quarter were the primary driver for the increase in guidance.

For the fourth quarter, net revenue is now expected to be within the range of $595 million to $600 million, based on a total comparable sales increase in the range of 6% to 7%. The company previously issued guidance in the range of $570 million to $585 million. Earnings per share in the fourth quarter are expected to fall within the range of $0.71 to $0.73, compared to the previous guidance of $0.65 to $0.69. Thomson Reuters has recent consensus estimates of $0.69 in earnings per share and $583.89 million in revenue for this period.

The yoga-wear retailer raised its guidance for this period while other retailers such as Tiffany & Co. that suffered softer sales in this time and lowered guidance. Different sectors felt a pinch during this period as well and as a result lowered guidance; for instance, SanDisk in the tech sector.

Laurent Potdevin, CEO of Lululemon, commented on the raised guidance:

Backed by improving trends and strong holiday results, we are entering 2015 in very good shape. Our guests are responding positively to both the women’s and men’s product assortment, and with the build-out of our senior leadership team near completion, I feel confident in our ability to execute on our growth strategies.

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Potdevin also commented on what the company has in store for it:

Building on our current momentum, our team is relentless in driving the business forward. With that, over the coming year, we will complete the critical foundational business improvements already underway while also making disciplined, strategic investments in our brand, product, guest experience and international expansion efforts, with the expectation that we will begin to see operating margin leverage in 2016.

Shares of Lululemon were up 5% at $61.65 in the first hour of trading Monday. The stock has a consensus analyst price target of $52.60 and a 52-week trading range of $36.26 to $62.68. The company has a market cap of roughly $9 billion.