Nike has revealed its financial results for the fourth quarter of 2018 and the full year. The overall picture sees the company perform better than expected, with total sales over the quarter up by 13% to $9.8 billion USD, digital business up by 41% and a return to growth in North America.
More than 80% of Nike’s growth over 2018 comes from what it describes as “new innovation,” particularly highlighting sneaker categories including the Air VaporMax, React, Air Max 270 and Zoom X. As well as design innovation, another strong growth driver has been Nike’s new approach to direct-to-consumer retail. Other key results included the news that Jordan Brand had almost tripled its women’s business over the fourth quarter, while the Nike Sportswear division posted a record-breaking $2.6 billion USD in revenue over the same period.
Discussing the results, Nike Chairmen, President and CEO Mark Parker explained that the company’s “new innovation is winning with consumers, driving significant momentum in our international geographies and a return to growth in North America. Fuelled by a complete digital transformation of our company end-to-end, this year set the foundation for Nike’s next wave of long-term, sustainable growth and profitability.”
The stronger-than-expected results for 2018 are positive news for Nike, with the company currently embroiled in a workplace culture scandal.