Birkenstock (BIRK) earnings Q1 2024

Employee Mo Soto arranges a shelf at a Birkenstock store on October 10, 2023 in Venice, California. 

Ethan Swope | Getty Images

Birkenstock on Thursday beat holiday quarter revenue expectations, reporting a 22% year-on-year jump, as the German sandal company benefited from higher pricing and rising U.S. demand.

As a newly public company, Birkenstock is still getting into a public reporting rhythm and only just released its fiscal 2023 results and 2024 guidance a little over a month ago. On Thursday, it said it stands by guidance issued then and still expects sales to be between 1.74 billion euros and 1.76 billion euros ($1.89 billion and $1.91 billion), representing growth of 17% to 18%.

The shoemaker, which started trading on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker “BIRK” in October, saw a muted debut when it first hit the public markets, with shares sliding more than 12% on its first day as a public company. The stock has since rebounded and is up more than 5% this year, as of the Wednesday close. 

Birkenstock’s shares closed more than 2% lower Thursday.

Here’s how the shoemaker did in its fiscal first quarter compared with what Wall Street was anticipating, based on a survey of analysts by LSEG, formerly known as Refinitiv:

  • Earnings per share: 9 euro cents adjusted vs. 9 euro cents expected
  • Revenue: 302.9 million euros vs. 288.7 million euros expected.

The company reported a net loss of 7.15 million euros for the three-month period that ended Dec. 31, or a loss of 4 euro cents per share. A year earlier, it reported a loss of 9.19 million euros, or a loss of 5 euro cents per share. Excluding one-time items, Birkenstock reported a profit of 17 million euros, or 9 euro cents per share.

Sales rose to 302.9 million euros, up 22% from 248.5 million euros a year earlier.

Adjusted earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) rose 12% year on year to 81 million euros, with an adjusted EBITDA margin of 26.9%, down from 29.1% a year earlier.

The retailer has been making strides to grow its direct-to-consumer business, which comes with better profits and more customer insights than relying on wholesale partners. 

CEO Oliver Reichert has said the company deliberately engineers its distribution strategy so demand is higher than supply but it’s working to double its production capabilities over the next three years to narrow that gap. The chief executive said those investments, along with other efforts the company is undertaking to drive growth, is having a “planned” but “temporary” impact to profitability.

The company’s gross profit margin inched down to 61% from 61.7% during the same period last year, with Birkenstock citing “unfavorable currency translation and the planned, temporary under-absorption from our ongoing capacity expansion.” The company said it continues to carefully track input costs and is mitigating inflationary pressures with “executed, selective price increases.”

In Europe, the company said it had “two…

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