Levi Strauss said it had been successful in passing price increases on the consumer, giving the jeans maker confidence in reaffirming its financial guidance for 2022 and as a departure point for newly-detailed long-term revenue and earnings targets.
Chief executive Chip Bergh said Levi was emerging from the pandemic “a much stronger, more profitable company” than when it listed in March 2019, and had made meaningful progress on diversifying its portfolio beyond the iconic denim pieces it is best known for.
“Brands matter in this industry and especially in inflationary times,” Bergh told the Financial Times. The company has already raised prices over the past year and has “successfully passed that pricing on to the consumer,” he continued.
Levi on Wednesday used its first investor day since the 2019 initial public offering to set a 2027 net revenue target of $9bn to $10bn and for its adjusted Ebit margin to reach 15 per cent. In 2021, Levi Strauss reported net revenue of $5.8bn and an Ebit margin of 12.4 per cent.
The company reaffirmed its guidance for 2022, forecasting net revenue of between $6.4bn and $6.5bn and adjusted diluted earnings of $1.50 to $1.56 a share.
That outlook comes despite the company’s decision earlier this year to “temporarily” suspend operations in Russia owing to the its invasion of Ukraine. Revenues from Russia made up about 2 per cent of sales last year, and Levi is still paying about 800 employees there. “We’re evaluating multiple options, as many companies are,” Bergh said.
Levi shares were 2 per cent at $18.53 in lunchtime trading in New York. The company sold shares at $17 apiece at the time of its IPO in 2019.