Coach Earnings Call Nuggets: Strength in China, Facebook Coupon

On Tuesday, Coach, Inc. (NYSE:COH) reported its first quarter earnings and discussed the following topics in its earnings conference call. Take a look.

Strength in China

Kimberly Greenberger – Morgan Stanley: I’m wondering if you can talk a little bit about China. We’ve seen a number of your peers indicate that sales there have been a little bit difficult. Your numbers were surprisingly good. Can you just dig into the strength in China? And in particular, how is the Legacy line doing there? And I just had one clarifying question for Jane if I could. Jane, did you indicate that without the acquisitions your operating margin in the quarter would have been up? And does that mean that you would expect after this year that you could actually see operating margins trend higher over time?

Jane Nielsen – EVP and CFO: For clarification what we said is, without the impact of the acquisitions, we would have had some leverage from sales to EPS growth. And our growth margin, as I called out, was impacted by acquisitions by about 30 basis points.

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Victor Luis – President, Coach Retail International: Given the overall context of the market and of course our overall higher comp base we are extremely pleased with the growth that we have shown in the quarter and it is a strong reflection of the relevance of our product and to the second part of your question the performance of Legacy. As Mike touched on in his comments, Legacy is truly resonating globally not just here in North America and we are especially pleased with its performance in China where it is becoming very strong second pillar for us alongside Madison. Madison has been since our launch in China with the take back of the business a true iconic collection for us and continues to be a very strong recruiting tool as such and now Legacy is a second pillar and especially relevant with current Coach trends that are looking for a more subtle, more fashionable collection from a multi-category perspective. We are especially pleased in China with the performance of Men’s and as well even outwear where in certain locations we are seeing double digit penetrations of Legacy outwear. So, overall a strong story.

Facebook Coupon

Brian Tunick – JPMorgan: I guess, for Mike, a lot of questions surrounding the quarter was on the couponing side. So, maybe just hoping you could just talk about the Facebook coupon at the full priced stores and obviously you still seem to have a lot of room to get back towards your peak conversion and traffic. Just trying to understand the thought process there and similarly in the factory side how – now you look back I guess you’ve had two or three quarters on the fair and square pricing, the couponing now back in the store, just give us some idea of your thought process now, what you’ve learned. Then maybe if Lew just wants to talk about the market share opportunities maybe in Asia, ex-Japan, obviously you are the market share leader here in the U.S. over 30% market share. Just wondering, what are realistic targets you think Coach could have in Asia, ex-Japan, over the next five, seven years?

Lew Frankfort – Chairman and CEO: I think we got about five questions, in there. Mike, why don’t you take the first several?

Michael Tucci – President, Retail Division, North America: I’ll give it a crack and I will – let me address on the full price side. There has been some noise on the investor side around promotional activity. We actually saw very healthy quarter in our full price business. We were extremely pleased with Legacy and the performance of our business across Men’s and Women’s. Promotional activity was actually down. So, what I think occurred out there which was a pick up on your side if it was, we did experiment with some customer acquisitions third-party opportunities within the digital space and that created some noise in the marketplace. We’ll continue to probe on that, and experiment, but it’s really not a large segment of our business. On the factory side, as we stated in Q4, we were going to take a more promotional stance in our stores around in-store marketing and that proves to be very successful. I might add there that we are really pleased on the factory side as we return to marketing tactics, in-store, we’re able to maintain very high margin rates consistent with prior year and get the productivity levels back.

Lew Frankfort – Chairman and CEO: With regard to market share opportunities, I mentioned before we have 17% market share in Japan where we have the number two share. It would show (a huge risk) for me to suggest that in China we could have that market share, but we would not be content with anything less over time. So, we do believe as the market develops, Coach is particularly well positioned for the emerging middle class in China. Victor touched on our business and our consumers. They still have over 90% repurchase intent. We feel very optimistic that in the emerging markets we can develop very strong leadership positions. In more developed markets, we think it’s more realistic to look at 10% as an aspirational goal, where in certain markets today we have 5% and 7%. Victor, you want to expand on that?

Victor Luis – President, Coach Retail International: I think you said it all.

Lew Frankfort – Chairman and CEO: Thanks.

A Closer Look: Coach Earnings Cheat Sheet>>