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Lululemon Athletica (Nasdaq: LULU) | Company Profile, History, Competitors

 

Lululemon Athletica (NASDAQ: LULU) is a designer and retailer of technical athletic apparel. At the end of 2017, Lululemon had 404 stores in 12 countries around the world. It was founded in 1998 and headquartered in Vancouver, BC.

Lululemon was founded in 1998 by Chip Wilson. Originally it was a yoga studio, but they began selling yoga wear in 2001. Lululemon is the creator of the "athleisure" trend where people wear activewear outside the gym.

Business Overview

Lululemon operates through three sales channels:
  • Corporate-owned Stores (70% of 2017 Revenues): Lululemon's store expansion will be focused on overseas markets in China and Western Europe. Lululemon also has a men's business that is a smaller portion of total revenues.
  • Direct-to-Consumer (22% of 2017 Revenues): Lululemon continues to grow its online presence. They continue to evolve its digital and physical channels to improve its revenues.
  • Other (8% of 2017 Revenues): Lululemon also sells through outlets and warehouses. Lululemon also sells wholesale to yoga studios, health clubs and fitness centers.

Lululemon markets its clothing under two brands. The traditional yoga-inspired clothing is branded lululemon. Lululemon also has the Ivivva brand, which specializes in athletic wear for female youth.

Lululemon differentiates itself through a premium brand, marketing towards women and technical innovation. The company also has a strong sense of community and connection with its customers. Lululemon was able to scale in North America by leveraging innovative product and the use of brand ambassadors.

Athleisure

Athleisure is still one of the fastest growing categories in apparel. Athleisure has grown with the consumer's focus on health and wellness trends. Consumers desire to buy sportswear to demonstrate their healthy lifestyle. These items also benefit from the trend towards casual and comfortable dress.

Lululemon is still a small brand and underpenetrated in many markets. Lululemon has less than 100 stores outside of North America. Lululemon is in the early innings of expanding into Europe. It has a strong brand image in Western Europe. 

Competition

Lululemon faces competition from well-capitalized athletic apparel companies like Nike, Under Armour and Adidas.

Management

Patrick Guido (CFO): Patrick Guido serves as CFO since 2018. Prior, he was Treasurer at VF Corp and also served in roles at Home Depot and Saks.

Stuart Haselden (COO): Stuart Haselden serves as COO since 2015. Prior, he served as VP of FInance at J. Crew and VP of Strategic Planning at Saks.

Financials

 $ USD in millions    2013    2014 2015 2016 2017
 Revenues $1,591 $1,797 $2,061 $2,344 $2,649 
 Gross Profit $840 $914  $997  $1,200  $1,399 
 Operating Profit  $391 $376  $369  $421  $456 
 Net Income$280 $239 $266  $303  $259 
 EPS $1.93  $1.66  $1.90  $2.21  $1.90 
Lululemon Athletica, Inc.
 
  Type     Public
  Ticker     NASDAQ: LULU
  Industry Retail
  Founded 1998
  Headquarters Vancouver, BC
  Locations 404
  Revenues
$2.6bn (2017)
  Employees 13,400 (2017)
  Website lululemon.com