In the Studio: VF Corp CEO Eric Wiseman
Cramer often tells Homegamers to be wary when a new CEO takes the helm of a company. This is the exception to the rule.
The new chief of VF Corp , the company behind retail brands like The North Face, Wrangler, Jansport and Seven For All Mankind, appeared on Thursday’s Mad Money where he told Cramer how he plans to sustain VFC’s growth and its brand’s popularity while the rest of the retail and apparel complex struggle.
VFC managed to raise guidance – a feat Cramer thought only the likes of Costco could pull off in the retail space - earnings a quick five points for those who got in when Cramer last recommended the stock at in the mid-$60s. Wiseman said the company was able to do so because its business model differed from many others.
With over 30 brands that compete in more categories than almost any of its competitors, along with being 30% internationally diversified, VFC is not subject to many of the headwinds that plague other companies. And while it does take markdowns on its product, they are few and far between. That’s an undervalued trait in a retailer, Cramer said.
But VFC’s real secret is in understanding the consumer, according to Wiseman. He explained that the company spends huge amounts of time, resources and technology to research the details of what its customers want. That’s how VFC knows what inventory to put where, Wiseman said. And it’s what helps the company get it right so often.
VFC is the “best house in a bad neighborhood,” Cramer said. That’s not always enough to make a stock a buy, but in this case he believes VFC’s brand power, business model and elevated management can keep it above the retail fray.
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