Nike Inc reported higher-than-expected quarterly profit on Tuesday, as the world’s largest footwear maker benefited from strong demand in China, its third-biggest market, and cost cuts.
Nike, which has celebrity endorsements from NBA players such as LeBron James and Kevin Durant, has also been quick to expand its direct-to-consumer presence by testing a pilot program with Amazon and Facebook’s Instagram, and sprucing up its revenue from China through revamped stores and increased online efforts with Alibaba Group Holding Ltd’s Tmall.
The company’s sales in China rose 9 percent in the first quarter ended Aug. 31.
Beaverton, Oregon-based Nike in June said it would cut 2 percent of its global workforce and cut about a quarter of its shoe styles in a bid to become nimbler in the face of intensifying competition from Germany-based Adidas AG and Puma SE.
Nike’s selling, general and administrative expenses fell 1 percent to $2.9 billion (2.16 billion pounds) in the first quarter.
The company’s net income fell to $950 million, or 57 cents per share, in the quarter, from $1.25 billion, or 73 cents per share, a year earlier.
Excluding certain items, Nike earned 57 cents per share, handily beating analysts’ average estimate of 48 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Revenue rose marginally to $9.07 billion, but missed the average analyst estimate of $9.08 billion.
Shares of the Dow component were flat at $53.65 in after-market trading on Tuesday.