Nike revenue beats; sees rebound in basketball category

Tue Dec 20, 2016 6:51pm EST
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(Reuters) - Nike Inc (NKE.N: Quote), the world's largest footwear maker, reported better-than-expected quarterly revenue and profit, and indicated a rebound in its basketball category.

The company's shares were up 1.7 percent at $52.67 in after-market trading on Tuesday.

Nike's basketball business has come under pressure, particularly from rival Under Armour's (UAA.N: Quote) NBA-star Stephen Curry's signature shoe line.

In response, Nike has redesigned its basketball products and delivered better priced products, such as the Jordan 31 and Kobe A.D.

"We're seeing incredible momentum in basketball, to be clear, basketball is back," Trevor Edwards, president of the Nike Brand, said on a conference call.

The company expects its basketball category to return to growth in the back half of its year ending May 2017, Edwards said.

Basketball category accounted for 5.1 percent of Nike's total wholesale revenue of $27.23 billion in its financial year ended May 2016. The Jordan brand, which also sells items primarily focused on basketball, brought in another 10 percent.

Nike executives also repeatedly emphasized during the call that its revenue forecast was a "much more comprehensive" reflection of its outlook than futures orders, an indicator that Wall Street analysts and investors focused on.

The company stopped issuing futures orders forecast in its earnings release beginning the latest quarter.   Continued...

A Nike logo is seen on a jacket in the Nike store in Santa Monica, California, September 25, 2013. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson