May 20, 2011
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Foot Locker Q1 sprints past Street on demand for running shoes

May 20, 2011

May 19 - Athletic footwear retailer Foot Locker Inc's quarterly results raced past Wall Street expectations, helped by continued strength in demand for running shoes, sending its shares up 9 percent in after-market trade.

Foot Locker
Basketball sneakers on display inside the House of Hoops in the FootLocker store at the Willow Brook Mall, displaying Nike shoes, clothing and sports apparel. (Photo: Corbis)

Foot Locker is continuing to reap the benefits of closing about 650 underperforming stores over the last three years to drive sales and margin growth.

Despite a patchy economic recovery, retailers such as Foot Locker and smaller rival Finish Line Inc that sell footwear brands from Nike Inc , Converse, Puma and Adidas AG have benefited from improving demand for athletic and running shoes.

February-April net income rose to $94 million, or 60 cents a share, from $54 million, or 34 cents a share, a year ago.

First-quarter sales rose 13 percent to $1.45 billion. Same-store sales rose 12.8 percent.

Analysts on an average were expecting earnings of 44 cents a share on revenue of $1.34 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Shares of the company rose 9 percent to $24.20 in extended trade on Thursday. They closed at $22.26 on the New York Stock Exchange.

(Reporting by Viraj Nair in Bangalore; Editing by Roshni Menon)

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