Many shoe companies have had a difficult time putting their best foot forward here lately. Timberland
The company reported a second-quarter net loss of $18.9 million, or $0.32 per share, compared to a net loss of $19.2 million, or $0.31 per share, this time last year. Revenue fell 6.3% to $209.9 million.
If there's a silver lining, it's that Timberland maintained its revenue and margin outlook for the year, with revenue expected to decline in the mid-single digits, and it expects flat-to-modest improvement in operating margins. It has embarked on a restructuring program, and is in the midst of closing underperforming retail stores.
There wasn't much heartening about the quarter, but one thing about Timberland is that it's been around for a long time, and offers lots of practical footwear options. I trust its longevity more than shoe companies like Crocs
I also really like several other elements, such as Timberland's status as a veteran in operating its business in a socially responsible manner, and its strong balance sheet, with $152.8 million in cash and no debt.
Of course, Timberland has been working on a turnaround for quite some time now, and there don't seem to be many heartening signs that the company's making much progress. And the economic slowdown seems to be making things hard for plenty of shoe companies -- Skechers
There are far more risky stocks investors could go for -- I haven't been a proponent of Crocs, even at recently low-down levels -- but even if Timberland strikes me as a solid company for the long term, it doesn't look particularly cheap to me right now, either, especially given the economic climate on top of everything else. For example, Timberland's trading at 17 times this year's earnings, a tad more than a stock that's shown a lot more legs, Deckers
Until there's more proof that Timberland's turnaround is coming to fruition, I think investors who are interested in this established company with socially responsible underpinnings can stay on the sidelines and wait to see if cheaper opportunities present themselves.
Slip into some related Foolishness: