Foot Locker Inc.'s board of directors authorized increases in its dividend and stock buy-back program as well as a $220 million capital expenditure plan for 2015 in a bid to keep shareholders happy and sales growing.
The board declared a quarterly cash dividend on the company's common stock of $0.25 per share, which will be payable on May 1, 2015 to shareholders of record on April 17, 2015. This dividend declaration represents a 14 percent increase over the company's previous quarterly per-share amount and is equivalent to an annualized rate of $1.00 per share.
Second, the board approved a new 3-year, $1 billion common share repurchase program extending through January 2018, replacing the company's previous $600 million program. The company spent $305 million under the previous program in 2014, and as of yesterday had substantially completed the full program amount.
Third, the board approved a $220 million capital expenditure program for 2015, maintaining the strong level of investment in the business that the company initiated in 2013. In recent years, the company has successfully invested in a variety of strategic growth initiatives, including new and innovative store formats, continued expansion of its European banners, strong capabilities in its direct-to-customer segment, and various technology initiatives.
“The company sees opportunities for continued growth in the coming years through this additional deployment of capital,” said Richard Johnson, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Our Board has shown it is confident that Foot Locker, Inc. has the financial resources to increase returns to shareholders — as evidenced by five straight years of double-digit percentage increases in our dividend rate and the third significant increase to our share repurchase program in the last three years — at the same time that we continue to invest directly in our business to seize opportunities to elevate our operational and financial performance.”
As of Jan. 31, Foot Locke operated 3,423 stores in 23 countries in North America, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. Its banners include Foot Locker, Footaction, Lady Foot Locker, Kids Foot Locker, Champs Sports, SIX:02, Runners Point, and Sidestep, as well as Footlocker.com, Eastbay.com, and SIX02.com.