Fitness financials: Consumer sales recover at Precor; Life Fitness 3Q earnings slip; Under Armour stays strong

It was a tale of two earnings results for two of the largest fitness equipment manufacturers in the industry. In the third quarter, Precor sales rose, while Life Fitness sales fell. Also Thursday, Under Armour reported its tenth consecutive quarter of revenue gains greater than 20 percent.

Precor finally is striking a chord at home.

After relying on strong commercial sales for the past few years, the fitness equipment brand reported a jump in home consumer sales for the third quarter 2012.

Precor’s latest total quarterly sales rose 21 percent to EUR 69 million ($89.5 million), fueled by a 28 percent increase consumer sales, and a 9 percent increase in commercial sales.

The leap in consumer business could be due in part to Precor’s strategy to lower some of its prices and sell some of its products in larger big-box stores such Dick’s Sporting Goods, as SNEWS reported a year ago.

Percor’s performance helped its parent company Amer report an 8 percent increase in revenue to EUR 601.9 million ($780.8 million) for the third quarter. Company-wide, Amer’s quarterly net profit improved slightly to EUR 55.9 million ($72.5 million) versus EUR 55.3 million (71.7 million) a year ago.

Life Fitness, Hammer Strength sales fall 3 percent

The third quarter wasn’t so bright for fellow fitness equipment manufacturer Life Fitness and sister brand Hammer Strength.

Sales for the two brands, owned by parent Brunswick Corp., slipped 3 percent to $151.9 million for the third quarter 2012. International sales, which accounted for 48 percent of the brands’ business, dipped 4 percent to lead the decline. The fitness division did see gains in North American health club sales and, like Precor above, it also reported stronger U.S. consumer sales.

In total, Brunswick reported its third-quarter revenue up nearly 1 percent to $884.8 million, while its net income dipped to $2 million, or 2 cents per share, versus a net income of $4.7 million, or 5 cents per diluted share, a year ago.

Under Armour 3Q revenue up 24 percent

Under Armour continued to churn out impressive results, reporting its tenth consecutive quarter of revenue gains greater than 20 percent.

The Baltimore-based athletic wear company reported revenue up 24 percent to $575 million for the third quarter 2012 with gains across the board in apparel and footwear. Under Armour’s quarterly net profit came in at $57 million, or 54 cents per diluted share, versus a profit of $46 million, or 44 cents per share, a year ago.

The company’s direct-to-consumer sales have risen 31 percent year-over-year and now represent 24 percent of net sales, officials said. Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank said the company continues to see opportunity to grow the brand further by focusing on the women’s category with it sports bras and other apparel.

Officials raised Under Armour’s full-year 2012 revenue projection to $1.82 billion, representing the higher end of its previous estimated revenue range.

--David Clucas