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Foot Locker Changes Profit Calculation to Exclude $25 Million Loss
Retailer included equity gains in last year’s earnings but is now excluding them following a share price plunge.
June 15, 2022
Though still a distributor of Nike products, shares of Foot Locker (FL) fell approximately 25% in February after announcing a major vendor focused on direct-to-consumer (DTC) sales would comprise less of its sales going forward. Prior to the announcement, Foot Locker purchased $68 million in common stock of Retailors Ltd, a subsidiary of Fox-Wizel Ltd., an Israeli company that sells Nike and other brands internationally. In effect, Foot Locker’s minority stake in Retailors serves to offset its reduced exposure to Nike in the U.S.

Suddenly though, Foot Locker no longer wants investors to consider Retailors when evaluating Foot Locker’s quarterly performance.

Starting in the first quarter of 2022, Foot Locker will exclude gains or losses from minority investments from its non-GAAP earnings calculation. This includes the company’s stake in Retailors.

In a footnote, we learned why Foot Locker is now excluding its stake in Retailors. Foot Locker lost $25 million in the latest quarter as a result of the decline in Retailors’ publicly traded stock on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.

Foot Locker certainly didn’t mind including its stake in Retailors in last year’s earnings after shares rose approximately 178% following its initial public offering (IPO) in the second quarter. That’s why beginning in the second quarter 2022, Foot Locker will recast 2021’s quarterly earnings to exclude the prior year’s gains from Retailors.

With Retailor’s shares down 34.5% YTD, Foot Locker’s year-over-year (YoY) comparisons would look much worse without the change.

Investors should consider the maneuver when evaluating management’s ability to navigate a world with less Nike in it.
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