Michael Kors' shares soar after strong 3Q results

AP News
Posted: Feb 14, 2012 12:53 PM
Michael Kors' shares soar after strong 3Q results

Shares of Michael Kors Holdings Ltd. soared as much as 25 percent early Tuesday after the luxury company said its fiscal third-quarter earnings rose 40 percent and revenue rose 68 percent, results that beat Wall Street expectations.

The company, which went public in December and designs and sells products from accessories to clothing, also offered an upbeat earnings and sales outlook. That signals the company is confident its affluent shoppers' appetite for high-end goods will remain robust.

The Hong Kong-based company reported before the markets opened that its net income of $39 million, or 20 cents per share, in the three months that ended Dec. 31. That was up from $27.8 million, or 16 cents per share, a year earlier.

Its total quarterly revenue rose to $373.6 million from $222.5 million, while its revenue at stores open at least a year rose a robust 38 percent from a year earlier.

Analysts were expecting earnings of 10 cents per share on revenue of $348.4 million, according to FactSet.

"These results reflect the strong demand for the Michael Kors luxury brand, our exciting assortment of fashion merchandise and our exceptional jet-set in-store experience," Chairman and CEO John Idol said in a statement.

The company opened 28 new retail stores during the quarter. As of Dec. 31, it had 231 stores, including concessions, compared with 156 a year earlier.

For the fourth quarter, Michael Kors said it expects revenue of $350 million to $355 million and earnings of 10 cents to 12 cents per share. The estimates assume 197 million diluted weighted average shares outstanding and a 40 percent tax rate. Analysts expect 12 cents on revenue of $348.3 million, according to FactSet.

For the full year, Michael Kors expects revenue of $1.27 billion to $1.28 billion and adjusted earnings of 74 cents to 76 cents per share. Analysts expect 55 cents per share on revenue of $1.25 billion, according to FactSet.

The American designer who became a household name in recent years as a judge on fashion design competition show "Project Runway". He has been among the top names in fashion for years, dressing countless celebrities, and even First Lady Michelle Obama, in his signature simple style with a hint of high-fashion glitz.

His designs, which are more practical luxury than haute couture, have made him an enduring hit with both men and women.

The company makes high-end handbags, shoes and clothing that it sells at its own shops and through other retailers. A Michael Kors crocodile handbag can run more than $2,000 and a halter dress more than $7,000, but the bulk of its business is centered on more affordable luxuries for well-off shoppers such as $300 sunglasses and $600 purses.

By midday, the shares were up $7.78, or 23.2 percent, trading at $41.39. They began trading Dec. 15 at $20.