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Lululemon Athletica's profit narrowly misses as costs rise
[BENGALURU] Lululemon Athletica Inc's quarterly profit narrowly missed analysts' estimate due to higher costs, a week after its founder Chip Wilson criticised the Canadian yoga-wear retailer's leadership for failing to keep up with market trends.
Mr Wilson has said the company was losing ground in the lucrative "athleisure market" and called for annual election of the entire board to make directors more accountable for the company's performance.
Athleisure is a mix of athletic and casual clothing that has grown popular even in formal settings in the United States.
Lululemon, which competes with Nike Inc and Under Armour Inc, also reported a slight drop in gross margin to 48.3 per cent for the first quarter ended May 1 from 48.6 per cent a year earlier.
The company's net income fell 5 per cent to US$45.3 million, or 33 cents per share.
Excluding items, the company earned 30 cents per share, missing analysts' average estimate of 31 cents, according to Thomson Reuters.
However, the company slightly raised its 2016 revenue forecast and said it managed to bring its inventory levels under control.
The company said it now expected 2016 revenue of US$2.31 billion-US$2.35 billion, compared with US$2.29 billion-US$2.34 billion it forecast in March.
Net revenue for the latest quarter rose about 17 per cent to US$495.5 million.
The company's shares were slightly down in premarket trading.