Ralph Lauren Corporation (NYSE:RL) Q1 2021 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Aug 04, 2020 • 09:00 am ET

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Ralph Lauren Corporation (NYSE:RL) Q1 2021 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

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Presentation
Operator
Operator

Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by. Welcome to the Ralph Lauren First Quarter Fiscal 2021 Earnings Call. [Operator Instructions]

I'd now like to turn over the conference to our host, Ms. Corinna Van der Ghinst. Please go ahead.

Executive
Corinna Van der Ghinst

Good morning, and thank you for joining Ralph Lauren's First Quarter Fiscal 2021 Conference Call. With me today are Patrice Louvet, the company's President and Chief Executive Officer; and Jane Nielsen, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer. After prepared remarks, we will open up the call for your questions. [Operator Instructions] During today's call, we will be making some forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws, including our financial outlook. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees, and our actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements. Our expectations contain many risks and uncertainties. Principal risks and uncertainties that could cause our results to differ materially from our current expectations are detailed in our SEC filings. To find disclosures and reconciliations of non-GAAP measures that we use when discussing our financial results, you should refer to this morning's earnings release and to our SEC filings that can be found on our Investor Relations website.

And with that, I'll turn the call over to Patrice.

Executive
Patrice Louvet

Thank you, Cory. Good morning, everyone, and thank you for joining today's call. The past few months have marked a period of extraordinary challenge, but also resilience, agility and hope. Our financial performance this quarter reflects an unprecedented three months of COVID-19-related impact around the world. We're taking the opportunity to leverage this period of disruption to accelerate our core strategic focus areas, drive new areas of growth and realign our resources accordingly. Building on the strong foundational work our teams had done prior to COVID, over the past three months, they have executed with incredible agility and speed to strengthen our connected retail capabilities, further rationalize our North America brick-and-mortar wholesale presence and continue to build our brand through personalized consumer engagement and more values-based messaging, all while pursuing our brand elevation journey, as evidenced by our strong AUR and gross margin progress. Since Ralph started our company more than 50 years ago, his focus on the long term, on the spirit of timelessness, has enabled us to not only survive times of uncertainty but drive lasting, authentic connections with our consumers. To that end, we have a responsibility that goes well beyond the products we sell.

And I first want to take a moment to address the persistent systemic racial injustice in the U.S. and around the world. We've been listening to our teams and a few of the many actions we've taken over the past couple of months include: One, we committed to elevate more Black and African-American talent into our leadership ranks. We will interview two underrepresented candidates for every open leadership role, and we are committing to ensure that people of color represent at least 20% of our global leadership team by 2023. Two,