by lulumum

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Lululemon Stocks Plummet 18%. Are We Surprised?

I'll be back with posts later tonight with guest fit reviews, and details on the earning call that happened today. In the meantime I wanted to open up this post for comments now that the call is over and stocks have started to plummet. These are my comments which I left on my Facebook group. 

Potdevin and Holman have arrogantly ignored customer feedback, eliminated the company culture and ethos by laying off 'old guard' talented employees and reorganizing, killed fan favourite designs en masse, eliminated colors and producing redundant colors (5 versions of navy), alienated customers, significantly raised prices while reducing value and functionality, killed the HeyLululemon feedback website (and the customer engagement that came with that). These results are no surprised and I'm sure it will get worse as we start hearing earnings results for the rest of 2017. Lululemon executives are nervous and the desperation is showing at store level. Enough with the buzz words Potdevin, 'the collective' (aka your employees) and 'the arena' (aka your former customers) are on to you. 



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75 comments

  1. LLM , thank you for the info , hope the company start to do something about it !!
    BTW, I really miss your fit reviews , don't get me wrong, I love guest reviews but one reason I follow your blog is because we have similar body types and your reviews are really helpful to me ;)

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    1. Awe thanks! I usually do my fit reviews on Tuesdays but I got held up this Tuesday, hopefully I can get in tomorrow. it was much easier to do them when the upload was after 3pm so I could come home, construct the post and have it up long before the upload. I fully intend to keep up with weekly fit reviews though.

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  2. To me, it's definitely lack of color choices. I used to buy multiple items of the same style. Now, I can't even buy any because they all look alike, similar style, same color, no special design. Someone's got to go and it better be someone at the top.

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    1. For me personally, it was an even split between boring and repetitive dull colours, all the tops pretty much looking exactly the same (short, wide, and shapeless), and the price hikes across the board. I guess I might have been more willing to swallow the prices if everything hadn't been so devastatingly boring.

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    2. For me it was a few design issues. 1. black luxtreme run bottoms - there have been zero no mesh variety. One or two pairs of tights with mesh is fine, but I need basic functional lululemon run tights that don't have large panels of mesh. There haven't been any in two or more years. 2. Cropped boxy tops, dolman or drop sleeve. Extremely cheap to produce garments in these cuts. They are extremely unflattering on me. 3. color redundancy, lack of color or coordinates or exciting prints. 4. lack of tank options. 5. sheer pants. again.

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  3. Ditto Anon @5:02. LLM, I like your fit reviews too.

    Have you guys noticed that the stock photos used in the articles about LLL stock plummeting are of old stock? When you walk into stores now, you don't see the same vibrant colors or old design. Everything now is a variation of something already on the floor. I hope they get a wake up call and go back to what made them one of the best athletic companies around. I miss all the little details and thought behind the design concepts.

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  4. Is this shocking news to anybody. Nope!
    I haven't bought anything Lulu since Christmas. (except off ebay) And not because I don't have money to spend. I don't for 1 second think that athleisure wear popularity is waning either.... Get your S*%t together and I will buy your stuff. Cute, flattering, fun details. Everything doesn't have to be mesh. Ruffles would be good. Go back to what made you great LULUMON, the people will come back.

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    1. I completely agree with you on the athleisure. Athleisure is a major lifestyle movement and value and a proper global movement, it is not a trend but a true major moment in fashion that reflects our cultural value. We are seeing this in high fashion which is looking to street fashion for inspiration. fashion houses are looking to Kanye and yeezy, vetemens, adidas, Rihanna for puma. Function is king right now. Comfort, performance, movement etc. It is here to stay for a very long time. If Lululemon cannot get it right now, when athleisure is as relevant as it is at this very moment...

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    2. LLM, your last comment shows the level of ridiculous this whole scenario has sunk to. THEY HAD IT RIGHT. IN FACT THEY RULED THE ROOST. Absolutely pathetic and your initial comments about the downslide spot on accurate. This is a fix that can be made. Simply draw on old success bring back past designs with a mix of minimal and bright colours and voila, people will buy and items will sell out in a week etc. They need to get back to the roots of their orginal success.

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    3. Eww... Kanye and Rihanna?(or fill in the blank with any other celebrity really) ...perhaps they should be looking somewhere else? LOL But like you say Lulumum this really just reflects the western worlds cultural values, haha!(not really funny though, actually more like sad but true)

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    4. lol, I'm not a fan of either of them to be honest (other than for their music), but it's interesting to me that 'athleisure' has been around for a while now but these streetwear inspired artists come up with their own designs and interpretations of 'athleisure' and all of a sudden high fashion is taking inspiration from them and giving it relevance (or vice versa). From what I'm seeing and reading, athleisure is growing in intensity, not on it's way out. What is really interesting to me is that Lululemon seems to have adopted this snobby attitude of 'we aren't athleisure' which is a market they created, at the same time that athleisure is gaining high fashion interest. Lululemon is changing to fit into the high fashion game and rejecting it's roots, at a time when high fashion is more interested in fitting in with street wear and using performance fabrics.

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    5. and don't ignore the planted comments here, on other blogs and on the reviews off the lululemon website likening Lululemon designs to Dior. I've seen this at least a dozen times over the past three months. Lululemon is wanting to be regarded as higher fashion.

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    6. I see what you're saying Lulumum and it makes sense to me (even though I'm not into "trends" and "high fashion" or "street fashion" etc). I always think it's hilarious whenever they claim not to be "athleisure". I also think it's hilarious that they are wanting/trying to fit into "high fashion" category. I just liked the fun cute colourful feminine clothes shaped to fit a woman's body that they used to do so well long time ago... never really thought of them as trendy or fashionable, etc, they were just doing their own thing imo and that is what I liked (not like everyone else but now they seem to want to be).

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    7. I agree with you. I never looked to lululemon as high fashion. I loved what it was for it's innate qualities - feminine, functional, colorful,. They have lost their identity and their edge.

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  5. I too really miss your fit reviews. Come back soon please....

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    1. I absolutely will! Thanks for letting me know they where missed <3

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    2. Ditto, I like your fit reviews too!

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  6. LLM, what's the name of the FB group you and LLA run? I thought it was Lululemon BST, but I don't see that one listed. Did you guys change your privacy settings? I'd like to join the group, if I may.

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    1. Hi! I'm no longer affiliated with the Lululemon BST group. It's run by majority angels at this point. I have a group that is specifically dedicated to reviewing lululemon new releases. There is a link at the top of the page under 'lululemon review group'. No commerce in that group, just reviews.

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    2. Thanks! I'm not looking for angels, so I'll try the review group.

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    3. Rise and Shine - BST isn't an angel group just as an fyi. Not quite understanding LLM comment about it being run by majority angels. It's still a sell sight and there's no angeling on it. It's listed as Lululemon Buy, Sell & Trade. Maybe try that title. It's a good group. Stuff sells in there.

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    4. You are right, it's a selling group not an angeling group. My point was that 7 out of 8 of the admins are power angels and I've voiced my opinion here many times about my opinion on volume bulk buying for the purpose of reselling.

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  7. I haven't purchased for two/three reasons:

    1) new job which brings me away easily accessible lululemon and leaves me with less disposable income (though better quality of life makes up for it)
    2) trying other brands
    3) very little in terms of color etc. that excites my fancy, or gets me thinking "MUST BUY".

    I hope they adjust, but I doubt they will.

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  8. Yes and i dont expect the ebates to increase anytime soon. Im sure that was very expensive for the company...lol. But it also encouraged me to buy...now at 138 for fast free tights...i am going to wait for md. Its hard to see angels selling 138 tights for 79 while i pay full price. And outlets are giving stuff away to angels while i pay full price. Not worth it to have things angeled by the time shipping and tip/fee is added in. Great for those near those outlets. Why not reduce original price and let us all share in better priced items.

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    1. No they won't hype up expensive pants. It makes more economical sense to hype up smaller ticket items.

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  9. I have a big gift card that I've been struggling to use. It's crazy to me, since a few years ago, I would have easily burned through the 350 on one upload. I went into Lulu yesterday and I just didn't feel excited by anything.

    I'm near an outlet and I have to say, it's mostly the reject stuff from the last year. It is devoid of color and style as well.

    They need to clear out all the crap from both WMTM and the outlets, and start with a clean slate.

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  10. Yes everything looks basic and designs and style are so mediocre. There are no little surprises in the details anymore-e.g. a surprise of some extra ruching, ribbons in contrasting colours on pants, a jacket that unzipped in the back so you had options re. how to wear it, a beautifully constructed rain jacket with a printed thick lining, to and from wear that was unique and fun for travelling. Now everything looks plain and cheaply made. So boring! And so sad that the unique quality that made the weekly uploads something to look forward are no more!!Its been ages since I bought something and I used to be a very regular shopper for many years!

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    1. Likewise here, very regular shopper for many many years, now I just pass it by, sad really. Used to love the excitement of upload day now Its just a disappointment haven't bought anything in months.

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  11. For me, it's a combination of the lack of feminine details, cuts that flatter the female body, nice colours, and also their more recent moves to shorten the length of sleeves, shorten top/jacket lengths in the body and make the widths of the tops/jackets wider. Everything is now boxy and unflattering, and doesn't fit me well anymore. It's been a disappointing experience.

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    1. Anon 12:37am nailed it for me. There are really so many factors that have soured me to lululemon. Yes, the lack of color. I will say though that a lot of brands are doing darker colors overall so that is only part of it. I was in an exercise class the other day in some of my older lulu and I have to say I looked a little manic with my outfit compared to the subdued blacks and greys everyone else had on (and not many were wearing lulu). It is ridiculous how there are four different shades of navy and grey available at all times currently. It just isn't necessary. What I really miss are the palettes when they'd release three or four colors over a 4-6 week period and you could essentially pick and choose how you wanted to design your workout wear wardrobe. Now the colors are all over the place. They release limited items in limited colors and nothing really seems to coordinate with anything else.
      The other big deal to me really is the designing. The lack of detail is so glaringly obvious. I wouldn't mind the price increases that much if they hadn't raised prices AND cut the special detail. I had on a shirt the other day--bought off of WMTM granted, but the cuffs are thin elastic like what you'd use for a cheap, elastic strap on a camisole. The zippers are plastic or plain metal, cuffins gone...these are the obvious shortcuts that most definitely do not ingratiate lulu to their customer base. And yes, finally I am annoyed at the poor fit. Are they even using a fit model at this point? I used to love the long sleeves and nipped in waists of lulu designs.
      I hope someone at lulu is reading this thread because honestly we could fix your problems with your sales within these comments. Just take them to heart and action!

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    2. ladies, I couldn't agree more with everything you both said. spot on! now let's hope someone at Lululemon does indeed read these comments. altho their arrogance is unbelievable. I wouldn't be surprise if they think their market research is better than listening directly to what real customers have to say.

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  12. I wonder how those 'strong' holiday sales were influenced by all those random gift cards they were sending out (both the Strava ones and the for no real reason ones). I mean I got two of those gift cards and ended up using one for a pair of gloves and one for a pair of crops from WMTM - between the WMTM discount and the $25 GC the price was back to something I'd consider reasonable!

    For me, the price increases while the classic lulu attention to detail vanished is what's killed my purchasing. Raise prices and at the same time switch to plastic zippers?? Oh hell no. The prices were already hard to justify, now it's just impossible. I mean, at this point I realistically own all the athleisure I really need, so any purchases have to be something I truly 100% want. And I don't see much that I want at lulu anymore.

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    1. I think a lot of us are wondering the same, how much those holiday discounts helped the sales. plus Ebates was at 6 or 8% back then.

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    2. I wondered how much holiday sales were bolstered by putting up multiple crb original colors!That was my last big purchase.

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    3. Holiday sales always include a lot of gift card purchasing for others and with the horrible product coming out of LLL people will probably tell those people to stop buying them LLL gift cards. I also think LLL sales for the past year have been due to customers still in that "LLL love mode" buying it just because it's LLL but I wouldn't be surprised if that is waining with many customers, I know it has with me.

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  13. Lack of Ebates is killing my desire to buy anything. I guess they'd rather have no sale at all than have the sale less 4-6%.

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    1. I think they are done with Ebates. They only used it to boost their holiday sales

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    2. I am not even sure how much Ebates helped. In January and February the Ebates was at 6-8%. Still, according to Potdevin 'Mr. Potdevin said the slowing sales trend early in the first quarter was most evident in its e-commerce business.'
      So the e-commerce sales were down even with Ebates at 6-8%..... very interesting. Even with a 6-8% off, people were still not buying the products. This speaks volume on how crappy these products are.

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    3. Good point Anon 10:50a.m. and yes it does speak volumes of just how out of touch this management team is with what the LLL customer wants. Mr. Potdevin was handed a built-in loyal following on a silver platter when he took over LLL and look what he did with it, tossed it aside and said screw you.

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  14. I haven't bought anything since December. I still look at the uploads, and check WMTM on Thursdays. But nothing appeals to me. A few months ago I wouldn't have thought to try other brands because I really liked my Lulu collection and still felt unrealistically hopeful about the quality and sizing of Lululemon. I purchased a pair of those Girlfriend Collective leggings that were being launched last year for $20, they arrived in February and I'm so shocked by their quality that I'm now taking chances on other brands like Onzie, and Peony and Me. It's so ridiculous to me that Lululemon has removed so many of their staples from production, and moved on from fun prints. I used to be 'brand loyal', but i've realized there are so many companies out there producing fun, functional, and quality pieces that it's silly to continue giving Lululemon my money for products that are dropping in quality and details. Cropped, boxy, and basic colored pieces may be in style right now, but I feel the pieces Lulu's producing aren't even up to par.

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    1. I tried to branch out about 2 years ago when I discovered Carbon38. I got excited and ordered to try Blue Life Fit, Vimmia, Alala, Ala yoga, Vie Active, and something else can't recall the name now. Well they all charge premium $$$ for that stuff just like lulu, BUT even with Lulu recent quality decline it's still better than many brands. Lack of flat seams, and gussets, scratchy cheap fabrics, sizing S-L or XS-L at best. And complete absence of any extras like cord strings, pockets, etc. it's just pretty much streetwear that looks like workout gear, but wasn't designed specifically for that. And you pay top dollars for it. Color selection is pretty much the same or even worse. Most of tops are either black or white or gray. I also get tired of clothes easily and usually sell my stuff after a few months. Well I discovered another issue with less known brands than lulu. It does not sell. Or it might, but it doesn't hold its value like lulu. So basically you pay $120-130 for a pair of leggings and can't resell them later for even half of what you paid. So looks like I'll have to stick with Lulu for now

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    2. Ooooh what did you think of your girlfriend collective leggings? Mine are due to arrive next month - finally!

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    3. I love my Girlfriend Collective leggings. I'll be buying more when they launch a full line. They're high waisted, compressive, and have really flattering seams down the leg (the seams remind me of my power pose leggings from Lulu). The fabric is nice and thick and feels really soft. They have a gusset and all seams are sewn flat. The back of the waistband has a little pocket - It's really just a slit on the inside of the waistband, I doubt I'll use it. No pilling and no snagging so far! I hope you like yours as much as I do!!

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  15. Sorry but I don't think that the image of a post-nuclear disaster is particularly tasteful. I am Lulu obsessed too but this image of atomic disaster or any kind of bombing is disturbing and unnecessary. I like your blog and respect your work and the values you show day after day and that's why I could not be silent on this. Particularly given the world we live in right now. Thanks Christina for everything. I am sure you will understand. And keep up the good work (btw- Lulu could learn one thing or two, totally agree)

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    1. I actually had the opposite reaction you did (isn't it interesting how two people can react the opposite way to the same event?). I found it very tongue in cheek, it did not bother me at all. It actually made me chuckle. after now year of lulu disappointments I felt a little vindicated and that photo was the cherry on the cake.

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    2. At Anon 11:45am...would you rather a picture of shit hitting a fan? Cuz I'm pretty sure that was the intent.

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    3. Anon 2:07pm LOL LOL LOL

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  16. Well of course this is not shocking news to anyone into this brand. For me, LLL spending dramatically reduced starting under Day, Potdevin encouraged it along by wrecking the brand further, Holman helped put the final nails in the coffin.

    For the economy, you never want to see a brand fail. These execs did not want to listen so here they are. It affects (and has affected) the livelihood of people who do not draw that big a salary from the company. That is who I really feel for. I could care less if I continue to acquire more LLL clothing.

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  17. I remember business trips to Vancouver and being so excited to visit Lululemon on Robson Street. It was the athleisure wear that got me....flowy designs, incredible fabrics, the attention to detail and the stores had their own zen vibe. Now you go into any store and you could be in a Nike, UA or other. I was at Lulu tonight and it was a sea of grey, olive, black and grey. I tried on the new rain jacket and previous reviewers were right - a crumpled mess, poor design, horribly cut and just ugh. I think the whole board of directors and senior leadership team need to go to a yoga workshop somewhere in Asia and find their zen vibe again. kick out the current design team and bring in people who live and breathe in these clothes. Go back to what made you special. It's not rocket science ?!?! Sigh.

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    1. They would have to reinvent the whole company. It will never be the same, my fears became a reality about 2 years ago when things went into the dumpster. Everything I loved about the company is long gone. Never before have I witnessed with my own eyes such a destruction of a company!

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  18. Mr. Potdevin states he clearly recognizes what is the problem: lack of depth in colour for Spring and visual merchandising that did not powerfully display their design vision. My response to Mr. Potdevin is that the visual merchandising did powerfully display their design vision and WE DID NOT LIKE THEIR DESIGN VISION AND THEREFORE DID NOT BUY IT. What a load of BS to blame visual merchandising when the blame should clearly be placed on whoever is responsible for green lighting the designs and colour schemes for this past Fall/Winter and current Spring collections. How many shades of grey, white, navy and black Swiftlies, Pima Cottons tops and leggings do they think a consumer will buy? Do they not look at their own website to see that their "whats new" page is a blur of grey, white and black? Mr. Potdevin has clearly not been paying attention to what he should have been paying attention to. While focusing on global expansion and the mens line he has failed in keeping his finger on the pulse of the companies major bloodline, womenswear. To drastically change the design look of womenswear and then go off and focus on other aspects of the company without keeping a close eye on how the new designs were being met by the female consumer has bit him in the *ss. Unfortunately his bad decisions hurt the company that I and all of us here at LLM love and I would like nothing more than for him and Holman's designs to hit the road and don't come back.

    It has been refreshing to read all the comments on this thread and be reminded once again how intelligent and knowledgable these commenters are on LLL and if the Board of Directors were smart they would take these comments to heart and do what's necessary to turn this current design vision around and get back to designing the type of clothing that made LLL so great.

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  19. Perhaps both the author and LuluAddict are misrepresenting the business results? (I mention both because you both used an image of a nuclear bomb.) To be clear, last year's results were very good -- EPS was up nearly 15% YOY in what was a very challenging macro environment. Additionally, the supposedly 'poor' guidance is for another 20% increase in EPS this coming year (and they are known to low-ball), again, in a macro sales environment that is driving many other retailers out of business. The problem is, Wall Street was expecting even bigger things (surprise!), especially since the company narrowed guidance upward only 2 months ago. Thus, the 20%+ stock drop.

    Yes, they had a poorer than expected start to the year, and yes, they admit to not having enough color in the selections, but to suggest that their VERY profitable performance somehow validates the constant drumbeat of criticism on your two blogs is a long stretch. A less biased person could take the company's numbers and make a strong case that Potdevin and Hollman are knocking it out of the park.

    I would suggest to you and your readers that you might better influence the company's product by first realizing that not every product is designed for you -- they do have a broad following now with customers who are both middle-aged and college-aged -- and the kind of mean-spirited, attacks I read here (...FUG!) just make commenters and the blog look peevish and are unlikely to sway designers doing a hard job to earn a living. It's much easier to knock down a snow man than to build one.

    Full disclosure: I am a stockholder who bought more stock today because I feel the downside was hyped beyond reason. Potdevin did acknowledge their near-term issues and is correcting them with more color already showing up on the website. ...Bottom line: this company remains VERY profitable.

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    1. Having followed the brand very closely over the past 7 years (including listening to every single earnings call in the past 7 years) I can tell you that I am very researched in how the brand is operating, how profitable it has been, what level and variety of inventory a store should have, and I can compare that data to what I see in store every single day as a consumer of the brand and I can weed out the bullshit. The 360 day average has shown growth and profitability, but would you say the same thing if you looked at the brand over a 5 year period? Does that trend follow the market? The positive things lululemon has done this year have been operational. Store send sales, online inventory checker, distribution from sales and the warehouse, a decent website (not without problems) and a great app, and some very flashy and expensive marketing. Those are all things that position the brand to be profitable IF the products they are offering are of the same standard and quality that their customers expect and if it resonates with the customer.
      Additionally, I have very sophisticated analytics running on my website and I know the demographic of readers I have and that they align pretty closely with lululemon customers...if you compare those analytics to sales conversions.

      As a customer and brand follower it is not my job to 'build up their snowman', or influence the company's product. The 'you' you are referring to is a vast demographic of blog readers, not just myself. This is why I have taken the position of not moderating or editing blog comments.

      If they care to listen to this demographic, they have free access.They do avidly read my blog along with other blogs. It's my job to communicate with other customers and engaged media followers and allow a platform for them to discuss the brand they love. As I've said before, company executives do not decide that their company is 'a cult brand'. If that where the case, every company would appoint themselves 'cult brands'. The customer makes the decision wether or not a brand is a cult brand. This blog is for that customer.

      As an investor, I'm sure it's always great news to be able to buy stock at reduced prices. I wish you success. I would love to see the brand meet their profitability goals.

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    2. I agree 100% when you talk about the product; that's why I eavesdrop these blogs (as do many other investors), but when you talk about the stock and the management, you talk about the company, not the customer base. The CEO, and other management, are employees of the stockholders, and their responsibility is to be profitable, which they have been, and continue to be.

      As you know, the five year period has a dip, but I'm sure you will agree that is due to CEO Day's leadership (and shortcomings), and not Potedevin. And as to the operational efficiencies, Potdevin's background is in engineering, and operations are his specialty, so no surprise there. (The reason you can see color come back into the line so quickly is due to his supply chain improvements.)

      I'm sure you know too that the 'demographic' you represent is a shrinking (but not unimportant) piece of the LULU pie: oversees is growing, as is the men's line. Even amongst your own commenters, I occasionally see a younger responder comment that she does not care for full-coverage bathing suits, regardless of all the negative comments, so not everyone here agrees. I also see those who prefer muted tones to color; are they not also LULU customers? It's big world.

      I see LULU struggling to be a bigger international company meeting the needs of more people, and I think management is doing it's best to meet that challenge, while keeping stockholders satisfied. I believe they are doing a reasonable job (and yes, I wear the clothing).

      I will continue to read your excellent blog for commentary on product and customer opinion (and yes, it influences my investing decisions). I do hope, however, that you will not join into the Wall Street hyperbole every time there is a major stock movement. (Or perhaps, please do, as it gives some of us an opportunity to pick up cheaper shares.) Because LULU bears, in general, do not agree with your love of the brand. There is a large faction who believe the 'yoga' fad will end soon, and that it is ridiculous to pay over $20 for a pair of tights you could get at Target. They are betting that LULU will collapse, that the game is up. They have been placing this bet for the last 3-5 years (at one point 1/4 of all shares were shorted). You, and your readers, are not aligned with these individuals, and their success in driving the stock price down (hopefully short term) does not validate your opinion.

      (Honestly, I think Potdevin and Co are listening to you and doing their best, but they serve several masters. That's just business. And a profitable one at that.)

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    3. The several masters they have been serving have definitely not been the loyal lulu customer base but hey that's business right? Of course their bottom line is better because they are producing cheaper product. I think the real learning lesson in all of this is that Mr. Potdevin did not listen to LLL core clientele before he went ahead and shelved all the classics or redesigned what didn't need to be redesigned. You don't need to look hard to see that LLL looks significantly different than it did 3 years ago in many areas including the newly designed website, just another design fail.

      Anon 2:34pm I can't quite figure you out. You seem to know a lot about this so called large faction determined to drive the stock price down and you speak as if this faction is the only reason the price has dropped $25.00 in a matter of months but I am not buying what you are selling here. There is a lot more going on here than investors shorting this stock. If you are happy with LLL product and the management of the company, that's great, to each their own. If Mr. Potdevin is truly listening than time will tell as actions speak louder than words.

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    4. Why are people acting like corporations are their friends? Oh no, Wall Street hyperbole?!

      Who cares? You're on a blog dedicated to consumerism. Try worrying about something that matters instead of taking something personally because you're a shareholder. Or do you really think anything you've shared here is groundbreaking?

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  20. Anon: 12:55pm You would do better to take out an op-ed to the investors who sold off their stock than preach to the choir here. Lululemon was sitting at the $76.00 mark back in September 2016 and now sits at $51.00 which did not occur due to comments made here. Management at LLL has made it very clear they are not interested in listening to their loyal followers especially with the way they shutdown their Hey Lululemon website. It's the arrogant behaviour of Mr. Potdevin that should be called into question for the way he has wiped out all the classics without so much as a warning and what, not expect any backlash. It's time to wake up and understand that social media is a treasure trove of free information gathering for companies and to not stand up and say you do not like what is happening would be foolish when the ability to do so is right there at one's fingertips. When you get paid the big bucks and take over the reins of cult brand like LLL then totally change the look you had better be ready to take some heat.

    It is also very clear that comments on Lululemon blogs does nothing to sway the designers at LLL. I would expect that the designers who work hard to earn a living are being told what the design vision is and to design accordingly. As for you not liking the criticism of the powers that be at LLL and believing it is not warranted just look at how Mr. Potdevin deflected ownership for the reasons Spring sales are not doing well, visual merchandising, oh come on now.

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    1. You dismiss management too easily. You don't think they are spending millions of dollars on market research and focus groups? Honestly, I have never seen a company give so much space in official company communications to community. They are not a bunch of ding dongs who just won't listen to you. They are using all resources available to them, including your comments here, which unfortunately do not always win the day.

      My point is they are selling product, and a lot of it. The issue Wall street has is that they are not currently increasing sales fast enough to support the high stock price, which is still valued very richly. We're not talking a fail here, we are talking sales are only predicted to increase by 20% instead of 25%. ...Still not bad in my book.

      And FYI, all stocks go up and down, retail stock especially so, particularly down in the past few months (if the company is still in business.)

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    2. This is Anon 12:17pm to Anon 2:49pm I highly doubt the ding dongs that spend millions of dollars on market research and focus groups were told to axe all the classics. I wasn't born yesterday but thanks for letting me know stock prices go up and go down. I haven't looked today to see what the stock is doing but as I mentioned above their stock price was at $76. not long ago and yesterday it was at $51., trading at $50. for some of the day so that is quite a drastic drop in price and if I held any stock that dropped that much (which I don't) it would make me a touch upset. I don't deny that that their sales have been doing better than I thought they would but I believe a lot of those sales are tied closely to the fact that the name LLL and logo still moves product and not necessarily because it is so great. I foresee their sales forecast dropping a lot more this year due to customers love of anything lulu is wavering and the love just isin't there anymore. I understand that a company has to satisfy shareholders and that means reducing cost of product and that's why all those special details and unique designs have been dropped but where I think they erred was increasing their prices at the same time which has hurt sales. If LLL wants to keep their long time customers they are going to have to find a way to produce unique designs with quality details even if it means a higher cost to the consumer. What I hear from LLL blogs is that they would be happy to pay more for these unique designs and details but not for the cheap uninspiring designs of late.

      What current management has also been able to achieve in a short period of time is killing off the love I had for LLL which I never thought would be possible and I know I am not the only one. As so many have said and I will say, I spent thousands of dollars a year on LLL without blinking an eye and now I could care less that there is nothing I like, the glow has diminished, thanks to Mr. Potdevin et al.

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  21. Interesting that almost all the LL buyers I know and talk to, or read comments from on blogs such as this one, are bemoaning the fact that LL is no longer interesting.So they may be selling product but are certainly losing a very large customer base and I think it will come back to bite them. And its not only lack of colour- although that's part of it- its the lack of unique designs and special touches that made LL famous in the first place. Now it all looks the same and looks and feels cheaply made. The fit is not there- but neither is the unique design factor. Items used to sell out so quickly and people would frantically try to find them somewhere. This doesn't happen anymore. Many women I know have stopped seeking out LL lately and and look for alternatives. Don't you think that points to a problem with design- and trying to make things on the cheap?
    The fleece is not as thick. The zippers are plastic. The clothes are shorter. There are no special design elements. A jacket I have from years ago has a contrast lining with lovely grosgrain details, unique pocket placement etc. As much care and detail went into the lining as the exterior. The current raincoat looks like a cheap piece of tarpaulin with no details or even lining of any sort.

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    1. I have certainly sold my share of stock based on negativity on this and other blogs, but the numbers keep coming up positive.

      I now have one simple metric: I look at people in my gym, and those who look the best and the classiest are wearing LULU. I see the Athleta knockoffs but ,frankly, there's something a little off about them; they don't fit as well and aren't as flattering to the wearer.

      I think a lot of the core followers on these blogs were in the brand when it was smaller, even stitched by Canadians. You will remember that things started to go awry under Day as the brand really took off. According to Potdevin, they just didn't have a supply chain to support the demand. Perhaps Day stretched it out a little longer with 'scarcity' marketing that lead to much of the sell-outs you are talking about. (And remember how much you all complained that they weren't making enough product. ..."Don't they want our money???")

      Reality is that this is a big company now, therefor production has to go overseas. Zippers, etc, have to be purchased in great quantities that are mass produced. The past you so glowingly refer to is probably only possible with a smaller label, and as you know, those are very expensive.

      I also wonder if younger buyers aren't more interested in trend than longevity. ...Who knows? But what I can tell you is that profit will ultimately win. (It's interesting to me that UA has been hit way harder than LULU, and yet loyalists are fiercely so, even though it is a far inferior product IMO.)

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    2. You don't know what you are talking about. Quality has noticeably declined in the past year. It reached a nadir under Day with Pantsgate, got better for awhile, and is again declining. The wide use of cheaper plastic zippers just came into use this past year. That is why the recent numbers are coming up positive - manufacturing costs are going down, prices are up so profits look good. However, customers will only pay lululemon prices if they perceive they are getting value for their money and people are deciding the value is no longer there - there are no unique designs, no unique prints, no unique colors, functionality are going by the wayside, and the quality is getting worse so people are not buying.

      As for people wearing lulu at your gym, I've had many reports of just the opposite - that people don't see the brand as much as they used to at their gyms. Sure, more college and high school kids are wearing the brand but I admin a 30,000+ person lululemon re-sale board and college kids are one of our biggest cohorts. They like their lulu cheap and they tend to wear one piece, not head to to toe like their mom and it's usually a pair of black leggings, the basic starter item.

      You're right, profit will win but you won't make profits if you can't sell product. Right now, lululemon is largely coasting on their logo, whether Potdevin takes the decline in sales numbers as a wake up call to give customers what they want is up to him. I'm not hopeful.

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    3. Again, I must respectfully ask the two of you to not misrepresent the company's numbers. Fiscal 2016 posted Sales/Revenue of $2.06B, while fiscal 2015 posted $1.8B. That is a sales INCREASE. Even with the slower than expected start to the new fiscal year, they are projecting Sales/Revenue for the new year in the range of $2.5 to $2.6B. Again, that is an INCREASE -- although a smaller increase than analysts expected. Can you honestly insist they are not selling product hand-over-fist?

      I have spent dozens of hours reading both of your blogs, commenting only a couple of times to thank you both and compliment you on your insight into the company (you were both kinder then). I would not comment here now if this thread were not about the stock drop, and if you both had not so gleefully reported a decline in sales. (Yes, I experienced a large (hopefully short-term) loss of equity, so it was at my expense and I think I am entitled to a comment?) I'm sure many will agree that there are few things as annoying as listening to presumed allies gloat and laugh, and taunt, "I told you so".

      I leave here now with a valuable answer to a formerly enigmatic question, "how can they sell so much product and there be so few positive comments?". I'm guessing now that other dissenters are also being hooted off the thread.

      What does give me pause as an investor, however, is that some analysts are expressing surprise at how quickly the vaunted 'loyal' LULU base has moved on to other brands. It seems some on Wall Street now believe you guys are fickle. ...Something to think about.

      Thank you both for your past efforts; you have helped me make a lot of money. I'm sure I will still check in from time to time, but I am finding all the negativity is increasingly clouding my judgement.

      I give you the last word.

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    4. You're an investor, not someone that actually cares. That's the difference. If your judgment is clouded by what you read in the anonymous comment section on a blog, that's more concerning by anything being discussed here.

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  22. Yep I think they are selling product but I live in the Midwest where things are slow to catch on. I saw a lot of lulu bags when I was at the mall. I didn't even go in the store. They have out priced me. Plus I have ALOT!
    I'm glad the spell is broken but it sure was fun­čśî


    Blowing lots of $ on pretty pretty things.

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  23. Goodness, a lot of corporate shtick here. Whatever, pal (Anon 12:55, 2:34 etc)! Not only are you a shareholder, you must be related. Just too staunch a defence being put up. The numbers may be coming up positive that the company is profitable but the brand is officially poor quality and absolutely nothing special. Potdevin himself admits he has relied on the logo and its history/status. Smart people know the brand now sucks. And no, you don't get our money. Those that continue to buy are new and if it's an overseas new market, it's a fad because they didn't have access to it before. All of your comments are what people like the exec and yourself tell yourself at ANY corporation. It is nauseating.

    On their working so hard...they can't even get their pricing right. Jacking prices because they ARE arrogant. Some actuary and metric tells them they can move the product at that price point. Yet product doesn't move, moves to wmtm and languishes there at the "old" retail price, still nobody desiring it; then there are the outlets.

    Of course you would use a bathing suit example as how clients embrace the brand, lol. Sorry, LLL was not built on bathing suits. Very small fraction of the clothing article offerings. Tread lightly on your ageism.

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  24. FINALLY somebody said something positive about this company ! I like their stuff and still buy a lot , more than I should and I have overflowing closet already. Everybody is bitching that they don't like Nulux or pants are sheer, but guess what once it hits wmtm it sells out. I guess no more sheerness issues . Lots more items go to wmtm than 10 years ago? No kidding , workout clothes market is ovesaturated now. Nothing like back then. And lulu is probably making bigger quantities than before. Somebody from New York commented on LLA blog about color not being an issue bc nobody really wears it anymore. Occasional pop of color that's it, but mostly black and gray. Muted colors are in right
    now. This and LLA blog give out such a negative whiny vibe it's nauseating. If lulu sucks so bad why can't those people find themselves another brand to move on and be happy ?

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  25. The sad, lonely shareholder here that thinks they have something to prove exemplifies everything wrong with LLL. You sound like a really miserable and judgmental person, Anon, with too much time on your hands. Why would anyone care what you have to say on the matter? The biggest whiner here is you, and it's positively a laugh riot. And it's adorable that you think one clueless person from New York is the be all-end all of fashion insight (does anyone saying any of this actually follow fashion? no). Keep acting like this isn't a mall brand, though. Their products are increasingly cheaply made, poorly designed and executed, and they are literally years late to roll out trends. If that's the hill you want to die on, go for it, but wow. Why don't you take your own advice and move on to a forum where butt-hurt shareholders can gripe about the fact that they've let a corporation become their personal identity?

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    1. And for the record, I'm a 20-something that thinks you sound clueless and ageist. In all likelihood, you're probably in the demographic you're denigrating.

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  26. Anon 7:02 am, I'm curious, have you read Chip Wilson's comments? He has a blog where he discusses his thoughts on Lululemon's performance. 'Sometimes It's Worse To Be Right Than Wrong'.
    http://www.elevatelululemon.com/sometimes-worse-right-wrong/

    I'm also curious if you are as emotionally invested in all the stock you purchase, or just lululemon. As a serious investor, do you follow internet conversation on blogs and Facebook groups for all the investing you do and get mad when it's negative? Do you only invest in the retail sector? Do you invest in commodities and get angry if people are unfairly ragging on gold or oil? I'm trying to make sense of you as a serious investor who is not also emotionally invested in this brand but it just doesn't add up to me.

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    1. I'm most definitely not taking anon 7:02's side or anything like that, but who gives a crap about what Chip Wilson has to say... seriously... I'm actually so sick of reading Chip this and Chip that every time the powers that be at LLL make stupid decisions and screw something up... Not sure why so many of you think everything would have been that much different if he was still around... (yeah, sure, everything would have been perfect, lol).

      Also... not sure why there are so many who feel so concerned about this person's(the whiny investor's) comments... who cares!?! Pretty sure most commenters here are just as emotionally invested in this brand as that commenter is and do their fair share of whining about what concerns them about what all has been going on with this company (that I am totally over and fed up with, but just can't help myself and still check out this blog from time to time, haha!)... I just don't care anymore... I've been coming to check the blog and LLL website only occaisionally for some time now and have been putting better use of my time and money elsewhere (on things more meaningful than a yoga/workout clothing company) and that feels really good to me. (Not than anyone cares, or should, lol! Just saying there are more important and interesting things in life than LLL!)

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  27. Anon 7:02a.m. Have you not had your morning coffee? I think your view of reality is a little off course if you think LLM and LLA reporting of the stock price plummet was done with glee, laughs, taunting and I told you so. Remarks made by both were directed towards the company not investors so don't take what's written about this matter so personally. As an investor who just lost a lot of money I am puzzled to why you are spending your time on this blog and admitting you have used information read here to influence your investment decisions then after your big loss you get on here and criticize LLM and LLA for reporting it. I don't recall you ever posting a comment thanking LLM and LLA for helping your stock rise as you referred to above. You say that Wall Street thinks we commenters are fickle because we moved on so quickly from LLL, who the heck are you, a reporter who interviews LLL investors on Wall Street? Get your facts straight, if you have been reading these blogs for awhile you would not be saying we have moved on so quickly. For many here it has been a slow death occurring for quite some time. For you to come on this thread and infer you have this inside knowledge of how Wall Street thinks of us leads me to believe you are the fickle one that should stay away from blogs that talk about companies you invest in and another piece of advice, GET OUT OF RETAIL STOCK.

    P.S. Before posting on LLM and LLA blogs, there is no sign in asking us to check off the box that states what our entitlement is to post here. I believe we are allowed to comment here whether we feel entitled to or not.

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    1. Totally agree with you!

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  28. Anon @12:55pm Did you forget to have your coffee that morning?

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