Thanks to a better performance running performance, Asics North America reported a 4.2 percent increase in Q1 revenues to the equivalent of $180.3 million. But the region suffered a loss of nearly $13.5 million, which the Japanese parent blamed on less marketing in the period ended March 31 and “a deteriorated costs of sales ration.”
While North America and Japan reported higher performance running sales in Q1, the category suffered an overall 7.7 percent sales decline to the equivalent of $392.9 million due to weak sales in Europe and Greater China. Overall, parent Asics Corp. reported a 28 percent decline in Q1 operating income to approximately $56.2 million as total period sales declined 5.7 percent to $896.5 million.
Meanwhile, at Wolverine Worldwide, total Q1 revenues slipped less than 1 percent to $523.4 million as the period operating margin fell to 10.0 percent from 12.0 percent. There were mixed results from the company’s portfolio of brands and a slow start for seasonal footwear sales. Own ecommerce sales were up 28 percent in Q1 to represent nearly 10 percent of WWW’s global revenues. The company’s Wolverine Michigan Group, a merger of the former Outdoor & Lifestyle and Heritage segments, Q1 revenues grew nearly 3.7 percent on a constant-currency basis. Merrell reported better-than-expected results, including 30+ percent growth in ecommerce and a mid-single digit in own same store sales. Cat brand sales, meanwhile, grew more than 30 percent Q1, but period sales fell in Hush Puppies, Chaco and Bates.
Over at the Wolverine Boston Group, led by Richie Woodworth, Saucony brand sales exceeded plan but fell at a mid-teens rate in Q1. Overall Boston Group revenues fell 5.7 percent in constant currency with Sperry, hurt by soft boat shoe sell throughs, down more than 10 percent and Keds’ sales up more than 20 percent. Saucony’s softness was primarily related to its core technical running segment in the U.S. Sperry enjoyed double-digit sales growth in both casual footwear styles and the lifestyle boot category.