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Amer Sports profits fall in Q4 due to warm winter

Matti Huuhtanen, Associated Press

HELSINKI (AP) -- Global sports equipment maker Amer Sports Corp., whose brands include Atomic, Salomon and Wilson, saw fourth-quarter net profit fall 18 percent to €31.1 million ($41 million), partly because of a slow start to the winter season.

Revenue in the period was €556.9 million ($730 million), down 5 percent a year earlier, the Finnish company said Tuesday.

In the full-year, however, sales grew 8 percent to a new record of €1.9 billion, with net profit surging more than 30 percent to €91 million.

Chief executive Heikki Takala warned that although 2011 was a record year, the Finnish company was hit by low demand in November and December because of warm weather in key markets, which also was expected to have an adverse impact on 2012 pre-orders.

"2011 was a record year for Amer Sports. Almost all of our business units and geographic regions are improving and we can see that the strategy announced in 2010 is proving to work," Takala said. "We do see some new challenges — the winter sports equipment market will be challenging due to the slow start of the season ... Further, the economical environment remains cloudy."

Amer's share price closed up more than 1 percent at €9.70 ($12.78) on the Helsinki Stock Exchange.

During October through December, Amer's net sales fell 10 percent in the winter and outdoor sector, but were up 22 percent in fitness equipment and 2 percent in ball sports.

Revenue fell in the company's largest market — Europe, Middle East and Africa — by 16 percent to €274 million, but was up 12 percent in the Americas at €205 million and 6 percent in Asia-Pacific at €78 million.

The Helsinki-based company has 7,000 workers — up from 6,500 last year — with some 2,400 employed at sales and distribution points in 33 countries.



Company site: http://www.amersports.com