Wolverine World Wide
Year-to-Date Return: 44%
Wolverine World Wide (WWW) simply isn’t the same company it was a year ago — and its record third-quarter results are proof. WWW completed a $2 billion acquisition of Collective Brands last year, adding the Sperry Top-Sider, Saucony, Stride Rite and Keds brands to its portfolio.
Transformational deals rarely come along, but this one surely is close. Prior to the deal, Wolverine’s Heritage Group — which includes Wolverine, Cat Footwear, Bates, Sebago, Harley-Davidson and HyTest — accounted for approximately 41% of its revenue. Today, the group represents just 20% of the company’s overall revenue.
That’s good, though, because WWW boasts a more balanced business model with three strong operating segments instead of only two. And each segment grew revenue year-over-year, with Lifestyle and Performance segments posting respective gains of 10% and 13%.
Plus, each of the acquired brands have contributed to the overall success of Wolverine’s business so far in 2013, while WWW also has a nicely growing global presence. The result: Wolverine raised its full-year adjusted earnings to at least $2.73 per share — which itself is 19% year-over-year growth.
For the cherry on top, Wolverine World Wide is focused on growing its business while also paying off its debt as quickly as possible. Its net debt of $994 million at the end of Q3 is 15% lower than than on the transaction closing date.