Fitness financials: adidas to expand aggressively in China, Russia; plus Dick’s, Wal-Mart

adidas said it expects China and Russia to eventually make up half of its total business, Dick's Sporting Goods said that strong demand for footwear, gear and apparel boosted third-quarter sales by 9 percent, and Wal-Mart posted higher profit for the third quarter, buoyed by cost cuts and growth in international sales.
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adidas to expand aggressively in China, Russia

adidas (ADSG.DE) said it expects China and Russia to eventually make up half of its total business, and it plans to open more than 2,500 stores in smaller Chinese cities and to expand its presence to 1,400 cities from 550 currently.

"We have laid out an ambitious five-year plan and expect to grow our business in Greater China by double digits each year. This will lay the foundation to regain market leadership in China by 2015," Christophe Bezu, adidas’ managing director of Greater China, said in a statement.

The company said earlier this month it aims to grow overall sales to EUR 17 billion (USD $17 billion) by 2015, up two-thirds on 2009 levels.

adidas said it is aggressively rolling out a new brand tailored to the youth market called Neo in lower-tier cities. It will also price its entry-level products at 15 percent lower than usual in those cities.

Chinese brands Li Ning and Anta have strongholds in lower-tiered cities where smaller incomes mean lower price points, while adidas has largely catered to the upmarket first and second-tiered cities like Shanghai and Beijing where city dwellers have higher incomes and are more brand conscious. But China's immense economic growth is making even the much smaller, tier 6 and 7 cities look attractive to the company.

The company said it also hopes to catch online shoppers with e-commerce, and will build a website for Chinese shoppers by 2012 to entice the country’s reported 420 million users.

Dick’s Sporting Goods Q3 sales rise

Strong demand for footwear, gear and apparel boosted third-quarter sales for Dick’s Sporting Goods (NYSE: DKS) by 9 percent, it reported.

Sales were $1.08 billion versus $990 million for the same period last year. Sales at stores open at least a year rose 5.1 percent.

For the quarter ended Oct. 31, it earned $16.9 million, or $0.14 a share, compared with $18.9 million, or $0.16 a share, a year earlier. Excluding special items, the company earned $0.22 a share for the quarter.

Looking ahead, Dick's Sporting Goods, which operates 437 stores spread across 42 states, projected a profit of $0.69 to $0.71 per share for the fourth quarter. It also expects fourth-quarter same-store sales to rise 3 percent to 4 percent.

Wal-Mart’s Q3 same-store sales down again

Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE: WMT) said it posted higher profit for the third quarter, buoyed by cost cuts and growth in international sales, and raised its full-year forecast.

Its profit rose to $3.44 billion, or $0.95 a share, in the third quarter ended Oct. 31, up from $3.15 billion or $0.82 a share a year earlier.

Net sales rose 2.6 percent to $101.2 billion. Same-store sales at U.S. stores fell 1.3 percent, their sixth straight quarterly drop.

Wal-Mart said it now expects fiscal 2011 earnings per share of $4.08 to $4.12, up from a previous forecast of $3.95 to $4.05, reflecting the tax benefit and expectations of solid performance in its fourth quarter.

Sales at the company's international unit rose 9.3 percent to $26.92 billion. Sales at the Sam's Club warehouse club chain rose 2.7 percent to $12.14 billion.



--Compiled by Wendy Geister

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