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Levi’s CEO calls Asia a ‘bright spot’ this quarter and is optimistic about business in China

Our China business is back, says Levi Strauss CEO Chip Bergh

Levi’s CEO Chip Bergh told CNBC’s Jim Cramer he is optimistic about the company’s business in Asia, especially China, where he business is ramping up as consumers return after Covid lockdowns.

“Asia is a bright spot this quarter for sure, and that is definitely helped by China,” Bergh said. “We have taken our expectations for Asia up for the second half of the year, in part, largely driven by the strength that we’re seeing in China, and that will help offset this weakness, partially offset this weakness, that we’re seeing in US wholesale.”

Levi’s reported earnings on Thursday after the market’s close, narrowly beating Wall Street’s estimates while seeing a major drop in its U.S. wholesale market. The retailer drastically cut its profit outlook for the rest of the year, expecting adjusted earnings per share of $1.10 to $1.20, compared to a previous range of $1.30 to $1.40. Shares dropped more than 6% in after-hours trading.

However, according to Bergh, the company is optimistic about its international business, especially in China. Bergh said he and other Levi’s executives visited the country recently for the first time in years, and were impressed by what they saw.

“We are seeing the post-lockdown spending spree as consumers come back, and that is definitely lifting our business and contributing to the strength that we’re seeing in China,” Bergh said. “So we’re very optimistic about China and about Asia overall, and yeah, we’re putting our chips on the table in these markets that are really growing.”

Levi Strauss CEO Chip Bergh goes one-on-one with Jim Cramer

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