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Aug. 3, 2020, 3:49 p.m. EDT

Under Armour upgraded at Susquehanna, but analysts question just how 'premium' the brand really is

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By Tonya Garcia

Under Armour Inc. /zigman2/quotes/208967132/composite UA -3.64% /zigman2/quotes/204420722/composite UAA -3.76% was upgraded to neutral from negative at Susquehanna Financial Group with analysts more than doubling the athletic company's price target to $9 from $4. Still, analysts led by Sam Poser question whether the brand is really a "premium" label. On the Friday earnings call, Under Armour Chief Executive Patrik Frisk talked up the premium nature of the brand calling out its continued innovation and its efforts, pre-COVID, to rebuild its reputation. "Premium has been and will continue to be core to Under Armour's brand positioning," he said, according to a FactSet transcript. "In this respect, we are working both to strengthen and, in some cases, earn back that consumer promise, one innovative product and premium experience at a time." But Susquehanna calls out the retailers where Under Armour is sold, throwing the "premium" description into question. "Under Armour must, in our opinion, pull back on its presence in the moderate channel at retailers such as Kohl's, Famous Footwear, DSW, Shoe Carnival, TJX, Ross Stores, and Burlington Stores in order to become the premium brand it once was and to which it aspires to be," analysts say. Instead, the company's business at Foot Locker Inc. /zigman2/quotes/204092533/composite FL -0.45% , Dick's Sporting Goods Inc. /zigman2/quotes/200566298/composite DKS -0.20% and Hibbett Sports Inc. /zigman2/quotes/201173500/composite HIBB +1.32% is "floundering," analysts said. "In order to repair the Under Armour brand and protect their house (to recoin a phrase), Under Armour must, in our opinion, cut the cord with the moderate channel until the brand is repaired and product differentiation by channel is as clear as day," Susquehanna said. Under Armour shares have tumbled 7.1% in Monday trading, and are down 54.8% for the year to date. The S&P 500 index /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX -1.12% is up 2.1% for 2020 so far.

/zigman2/quotes/208967132/composite
US : U.S.: NYSE
$ 10.06
-0.38 -3.64%
Volume: 6.65M
Sept. 18, 2020 4:05p
P/E Ratio
N/A
Dividend Yield
N/A
Market Cap
$4.90 billion
Rev. per Employee
$346,212
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/zigman2/quotes/204420722/composite
US : U.S.: NYSE
$ 11.52
-0.45 -3.76%
Volume: 9.51M
Sept. 18, 2020 4:05p
P/E Ratio
N/A
Dividend Yield
N/A
Market Cap
$4.90 billion
Rev. per Employee
$346,212
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/zigman2/quotes/204092533/composite
US : U.S.: NYSE
$ 35.79
-0.16 -0.45%
Volume: 2.72M
Sept. 18, 2020 4:00p
P/E Ratio
19.04
Dividend Yield
1.68%
Market Cap
$3.74 billion
Rev. per Employee
$161,332
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/zigman2/quotes/200566298/composite
US : U.S.: NYSE
$ 58.43
-0.12 -0.20%
Volume: 2.06M
Sept. 18, 2020 4:00p
P/E Ratio
20.28
Dividend Yield
2.14%
Market Cap
$5.21 billion
Rev. per Employee
$186,650
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/zigman2/quotes/201173500/composite
US : U.S.: Nasdaq
$ 40.03
+0.52 +1.32%
Volume: 868,798
Sept. 18, 2020 4:00p
P/E Ratio
20.84
Dividend Yield
N/A
Market Cap
$662.24 million
Rev. per Employee
$109,639
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/zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime
US : S&P US
3,319.47
-37.54 -1.12%
Volume: 4.09B
Sept. 18, 2020 5:15p
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