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Wolverine (WWW) Unveils Sweaty Betty Brand's Growth Plans

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Wolverine World Wide, Inc. (WWW - Free Report) focuses on developing brands that aptly suit consumer needs on the back of advanced technologies and accurate market insights. It remains committed to new launches across different brand banners. In recent developments, management has announced efforts to boost the operating performance of its global women’s activewear brand, Sweaty Betty, and drive global growth. It will also make investments in the brand which was acquired in August 2021.

We note that Sweaty Betty will now report to the company’s London-based International Group, responsible for Wolverine’s operations outside the United States. This step will highly align Sweaty Betty with the company’s global centers of excellence and perfectly suits its strategy to prioritize resources and tap growth opportunities.

Owing to this transition, various opportunities are identified to efficiently align Sweaty Betty’s cost structure to the company’s other brands. These comprise consolidating the London office space, procuring savings through WWW’s new Profit Improvement Office along with proposing a UK workforce reduction. All these actions are expected to fuel Sweaty Betty’s long-term potential.

During fourth-quarter 2022, Sweaty Betty generated revenues of $72.8 million, down 7% year over year. On its last earnings call, management had forecast Sweaty Betty revenues to increase in the low single digits for 2023. With respect to Sweaty Betty, the company had introduced one pop-up in China and intends to open 10 stores in 2023 mainly in the U.K. and Ireland.

What’s More?

Wolverine continues to focus on strengthening its direct-to-consumer (DTC) business. Speed-to-market initiatives, deployment of digital product development tools, expansion of e-commerce platforms and frequent introduction of products are steadily contributing to its performance. WWW has been reinforcing its footprint across international markets. During the fourth quarter of 2022, DTC revenues of $224.4 million were flat year over year.

International business remains one of the key revenue drivers. WWW’s international business was robust in the fourth quarter and improved 22.2% to $281.5 million. International revenues increased 31.9% in constant currency. We note that the company’s EMEA business is a major contributor to international growth, with a revenue increase of 21%. The performance was further boosted by the top three brands, which represented more than 50% of the international revenues. Wolverine plans to invest in key growth markets and continues to invest in international regions, with joint ventures for Merrell and Saucony, and expand e-commerce capabilities globally.

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Markedly, shares of this Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) have surged 49.3% over the past three months, compared with the industry’s 3.8% gain.

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