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Peloton shares plunge on wider-than-expected loss, tepid holiday forecast

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A Peloton Bike inside a showroom in New York, US, on Wednesday, Nov. 1, 2023. Peloton Interactive Inc. is scheduled to release earnings figures on November 2.

Michael Nagle | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Shares of Peloton plunged about 8% in premarket trading Thursday after the company reported a wider-than-expected quarterly loss and a tepid holiday forecast.

Here’s how the connected fitness company did in its first fiscal quarter compared with what Wall Street was anticipating, based on a survey of analysts by LSEG, formerly known as Refinitiv:

  • Loss per share: 44 cents vs. 34 cents expected
  • Revenue: $595.5 million vs. $591 million expected

The company’s reported net loss for the three-month period that ended Sept. 30 was $159.3 million, or 44 cents per share, compared with a loss of $408.5 million, or $1.20 per share, a year earlier.

Sales dropped to $595.5 million, down from $616.5 million a year earlier.

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For its holiday quarter, Peloton is expecting revenue of between $715 million and $750 million, an 8% drop at the midpoint compared to the year-ago period. That falls short of the $763.2 million analysts had expected for the company’s fiscal second quarter, according to LSEG.

Peloton has been working to launch a series of new strategies in its quest to reclaim its pandemic-era heyday. 

In late September, the company announced a five-year partnership with former rival Lululemon that brought Peloton’s prized fitness content to the apparel retailer’s exercise app. The partnership marked the first time that Peloton was willing to share its content with another company as it looks to woo Lululemon’s 13 million members and convince them to sign up for its subscriptions. 

The day before announcing its partnership with Lululemon, Peloton revealed that it was parting ways with its chief product officer and co-founder Tom Cortese, who helped start the company alongside ousted founder John Foley. With Cortese’s departure, just two executives from Peloton’s early days remain in its C-suite: Jennifer Cotter, the company’s chief content officer, and Dion Camp Sanders, its chief emerging business officer.

A few weeks later, the company announced a multi-year partnership with the NBA and WNBA, which agreed to name Peloton as an official fitness partner of the sports leagues. As part of the partnership, NBA league pass – the league’s live game subscription service – will be available to stream across Peloton devices. The company also has plans to develop NBA- and WNBA-themed fitness classes. 

When it comes to hardware, Peloton is now selling its Row machine in Canada and its Bike and Bike+ in Austria, its fifth market outside of the U.S., as it looks to boost sales of its connected fitness products, which have been on the decline. 

All of the strategies are part of CEO Barry McCarthy’s goal to return the company to growth and boost membership so it can eventually find a path to profitability. During the previous quarter, Peloton saw higher than expected churn that the company suspects was related to the recall of its Bike seat post, along with seasonality. 

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The post, which had a tendency to detach and break unexpectedly during use and left some riders injured, was recalled in May and impacted more than 2 million bikes. During the previous quarter, the recall cost the company $40 million, far more than it had expected.

This story is developing. Please check back for updates.

Source: CNBC

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