Adidas shares slide after cautious 2024 outlook


Updates share price, adds CEO quotes

LONDON, Feb 1 (Reuters) - Adidas shares fell on Thursday after the sportswear maker delivered a forecast for 2024 well below analyst expectations, based on limited profits from selling off its last stocks of Yeezy shoes after its break-up with Kanye West.

Adidas forecast an operating profit of around 500 million euros ($539.95 million) in 2024, against analysts' estimate of 1.294 billion euros according to a company-compiled consensus.

That forecast assumes Adidas will sell its remaining Yeezy shoe inventory at cost, but CEO Bjorn Gulden left the door open to possible upgrades.

"We're trying to be humble, and down-to-earth, and then rather surprise you positively than negatively," Gulden told analysts on a call.

"Consumer sentiment around the world is of course not great, it's not like people are lining up everywhere to buy product," he said, adding that Adidas could however still gain market share in that environment.

Shares fell 8% at the open.

Adidas also flagged a "severe impact" from the devaluation of the Argentine peso at the end of the year. Adidas rival Puma also reported weaker results after the peso was devalued by 54% in mid-December. Argentina is an important market for both sportswear brands.

Adidas reported an operating profit of 268 million euros for 2023, down from 669 million euros a year earlier, but easily beating the 100-million-euro loss previously forecast by the company.

Gulden, in the job since the start of 2023, has been driving a turnaround at the company bruised by its break-up with rapper West, who goes by Ye, which left Adidas with unsold Yeezy shoes worth 1.2 billion euros.

Adidas reported 2023 sales of 21.4 billion euros including the Yeezy shoes, and 20.6 billion euros excluding them.

($1 = 0.9260 euros)

(Reporting by Helen Reid; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips, Lincoln Feast and Tomasz Janowski)

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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