Crocs Goes Out of Style


How fast can your fortunes turn in the world of retail and fashion? For Crocs (NAS: CROX) , it was overnight, after the company released a report saying its growth is slowing, turning it from a market darling to a dud. Shares fell 39% to $16.15, just $3 higher than the company's 52-week low.

Crocs said it now expects revenue of $273 million to $275 million, down from a previous estimate of $280 million. Earnings will also be lower than expected, at $0.31 to $0.33, from a previous estimate of $0.40.

Both revenue and earnings are still solid growth levels, but there are a couple of things hitting Crocs hard today, the first being market expectations. Crocs has had a history of beating expectations, and when a company does that regularly, investors are looking for the trend to continue. It is also making this announcement at a time when investors are concerned about Europe's health and the U.S. consumer, and it could be a slippery slope if results start to slip.

The upside
The good news is that Crocs is now trading at a much more attractive level for investors looking to buy in. Shares are trading at 13 times trailing earnings, revenue growth is still well into double digits, and earnings are growing as well. It isn't like Crocs is in trouble, it's just growing more slowly than expected.

A sign of the times?
I wouldn't exactly say that Crocs is a bellwether at this point but this announcement does bring up questions for competitors. Nike (NYS: NKE) , Deckers Outdoor (NAS: DECK) , and Under Armour (NYS: UA) are all competing in the footwear space in which Crocs has had slowing growth during the third quarter. This could point to weakness in the sector if one of the fastest-growing companies is slowing down.

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At the time thisarticle was published Fool contributor Travis Hoium does not have a position in any company mentioned. You can follow Travis on Twitter at @FlushDrawFool, check out his personal stock holdings or follow his CAPS picks at TMFFlushDraw.The Motley Fool owns shares of Under Armour. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Nike and Under Armour. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a diagonal call position in Nike. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Originally published