American Eagle Outfitters Reports Second Quarter Results

American Eagle Outfitters Reports All-time High Second Quarter Revenue and Operating Income Reflecting Strength Across Brands and Great Progress on our “Real Power. Real Growth.” Value Creation Plan

September 2, 2021

Second Quarter 2021 Highlights Compared to Second Quarter 2020

  • Record revenue of $1.19 billion increased 35%
  • Operating income reached an all-time second quarter high of $168 million
  • Higher full-priced sales, reduced promotions and controlled costs fueled gross margin expansion to 42.1%
  • Aerie net revenue increased 34%, operating income rose 132%, reflecting a 21.0% operating margin
  • American Eagle net revenue rose 35%, operating income was up 234%, reflecting a 23.5% operating margin

PITTSBURGH — (BUSINESS WIRE) – American Eagle Outfitters, Inc. (NYSE: AEO) today announced financial results for the second quarter ended July 31, 2021.

“It’s extremely gratifying to see significant growth across our business, as we delivered another quarter of record revenue and profitability. Results underscore the strength of our brands, outstanding product and a leading customer experience across selling channels. We are running our business with a laser focus on profitability through inventory and real-estate optimization initiatives and investments to enhance our supply chain. Led by an expanding customer file, Aerie is achieving consistent, robust multi-year growth and very strong profit flow through. American Eagle posted meaningful top-and bottom-line increases with significant unlock still ahead.  Our Real Power. Real Growth. plan has been a guiding light for all facets of the business, positioning us to successfully navigate a dynamic macro environment. Despite external challenges, I believe we are on path to achieve $600 million in operating income this year, well ahead of our previous target,” said Jay Schottenstein, AEO’s Executive Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer.”

Second Quarter 2021 Results

  • Total net revenue increased $311 million, or 35% to $1.19 billion, compared to $0.88 billion in the second quarter of 2020.
  • Aerie revenue of $336 million rose 34% from second quarter 2020 on top of 32% growth last year. American Eagle revenue of $846 million rose 35% versus second quarter 2020 following a 26% decline last year.
  • Consolidated store revenue increased 73% from second quarter 2020 due to an improvement in store traffic. Total online demand this quarter was up 9%. Digital revenue decreased 5% from second quarter 2020 reflecting the natural channel shift associated with improved store traffic across the US. Last year, the abrupt acceleration in digital also created a significant fulfillment backlog that shifted sales from the first quarter into the second quarter in 2020. Compared to the pre-pandemic second quarter 2019 base, store revenue increased 4% and digital revenue increased 66%.
  • Gross profit of $502 million rose 89% from $265 million in the second quarter of 2020.
  • Gross margin of 42.1% expanded 1210 basis points from 30% in the second quarter of 2020. The increase from 2020 reflected significant revenue and merchandise margin expansion across brands, primarily driven by strong demand, higher full-priced sales, lower promotions and inventory optimization initiatives. Rent, digital delivery expenses and compensation also leveraged.
  • Selling, general and administrative expense leveraged 70 basis points as a rate to sales versus second quarter 2020 due to strong revenue growth. On a dollar basis, SG&A increased due largely to the re-opening of our stores. We also saw increased advertising as well as incentive costs.
  • Depreciation and amortization expense of $40 million compared to $39 million in the second quarter of 2020 and leveraged 100 basis points as a rate to sales due to strong revenue growth, asset impairments, as well as lower capital spending in 2020.
  • Operating income of $168 million compared to an operating loss of $12 million in second quarter 2020, or operating income of $2 million on an adjusted basis. Aerie’s operating income of $71 million increased 132% from $30 million in the second quarter of 2020 and American Eagle’s operating income of $199 million increased 234% from $60 million in the second quarter of 2020.
  • Operating margin of 14.1% reflected the highest rate since 2008. Aerie operating margin of 21.0% expanded 890 bps from 2020 and American Eagle’s operating margin of 23.5% expanded 1400 bps from 2020.
  • Average diluted shares outstanding were 209 million compared to 166 million in the second quarter of 2020. The increase primarily reflected 36 million shares of unrealized dilution associated with the company’s convertible notes.
  • EPS of $0.58 this quarter. Adjusted EPS of $0.60 this quarter excludes $0.02 of non-cash interest expense on the company’s convertible notes.


Total consolidated ending inventory at cost increased $82 million or 20% to $504 million compared to a 21% decline last year. Inventory was up across both brands, positioned in key Fall categories, yet remained below revenue growth, which is consistent with our focus on inventory optimization.

Capital Expenditures

In the second quarter of 2021, capital expenditures totaled $49 million, and year to date totaled $86 million.  For fiscal 2021, the company now expects capital expenditures to be at the lower end of our prior guidance range of $250 to $275 million.

Cash Flow and Balance Sheet

The company ended the period with total cash and short-term investments of $824 million. This compares to $899 million in second quarter 2020 which included $200 million from AEO’s revolving credit facility, repaid in third quarter 2020.

Shareholder Returns

As previously announced, the Board of Directors of AEO approved a 31% increase in the quarterly dividend in June 2021 from $0.1375 to $0.18 per share. The company’s second quarter cash dividend of $30 million was paid during the quarter.

Conference Call and Supplemental Financial Information

Today, management will host a conference call and real time webcast at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time. To listen to the call, dial 1-877-407-0789 or internationally dial 1-201-689-8562 or go to to access the webcast and audio replay.  Additionally, a financial results presentation is posted on the company’s website.

Non-GAAP Measures

This press release includes information on non-GAAP financial measures (“non-GAAP” or “adjusted”), including consolidated adjusted operating income and earnings per share, excluding non-GAAP items. These financial measures are not based on any standardized methodology prescribed by U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (“GAAP”) and are not necessarily comparable to similar measures presented by other companies. Non-GAAP information is provided as a supplement to, not as a substitute for, or as superior to, measures of financial performance prepared in accordance with GAAP.  Management believes that this non-GAAP information is useful for an alternate presentation of the company’s performance, when reviewed in conjunction with the company’s GAAP consolidated financial statements, as it helps identify underlying trends in our business that could otherwise be masked by the effect of the items that we exclude in such non-GAAP measures. Accordingly, we believe that adjusted operating income provides useful information to investors and others in understanding and evaluating our operating results, enhancing the overall understanding of our past performance and future prospects, and allowing for greater transparency with respect to the key financial metrics used by our management in our financial and operational decision-making.

These amounts are not determined in accordance with GAAP and therefore, should not be used exclusively in evaluating the company’s business and operations.  We encourage investors and others to review our financial information in its entirety, not to rely on any single financial measure and to view these non-GAAP financial measures in conjunction with the related GAAP financial measures.

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About American Eagle Outfitters, Inc.

American Eagle Outfitters, Inc. (NYSE: AEO) is a leading global specialty retailer offering high-quality, on-trend clothing, accessories and personal care products at affordable prices under its American Eagle® and Aerie® brands. Our purpose is to show the world that there’s REAL power in the optimism of youth. The company operates stores in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Hong Kong, and ships to 81 countries worldwide through its websites. American Eagle and Aerie merchandise also is available at more than 200 international locations operated by licensees in 33 countries. For more information, please visit

Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995

This release and related statements by management contain forward-looking statements (as such term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995), which represent our expectations or beliefs concerning future events, including third quarter and annual fiscal 2021 results. All forward-looking statements made by the company involve material risks and uncertainties and are subject to change based on many important factors, some of which may be beyond the company’s control. Words such as “estimate,” “project,” “plan,” “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “potential,” and similar expressions may identify forward-looking statements. Except as may be required by applicable law, we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise and even if experience or future changes make it clear that any projected results expressed or implied therein will not be realized. The following factors, in addition to the risks disclosed in Item 1A., Risk Factors, of our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended January 30, 2021 and in any other filings that we may make with the Securities and Exchange Commission in some cases have affected, and in the future could affect, the company’s financial performance and could cause actual results for fiscal 2021 and beyond to differ materially from those expressed or implied in any of the forward-looking statements included in this release or otherwise made by management: the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and related operational disruptions; the risk that the company’s operating, financial and capital plans may not be achieved; our inability to anticipate customer demand and changing fashion trends and to manage our inventory commensurately; seasonality of our business; our inability to achieve planned store financial performance; our inability to react to raw material cost, labor and energy cost increases; our inability to gain market share in the face of declining shopping center traffic; our inability to respond to changes in e-commerce and leverage omni-channel demands; our inability to expand internationally; difficulty with our international merchandise sourcing strategies; challenges with information technology systems, including safeguarding against security breaches; and global economic, public health, social, political and financial conditions, and the resulting impact on consumer confidence and consumer spending, as well as other changes in consumer discretionary spending habits, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations and liquidity.


Olivia Messina