WW International crashes 25% on disappointing guide; Oprah Winfrey to leave the board

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WW International crashes 25% on disappointing guide; Oprah Winfrey to leave the board
Credit: © Reuters.

Shares of WW International (NASDAQ: WW ) plummeted roughly 25% in premarket trading Thursday after the human-centric technology company offered below-expectations guidance for 2024 revenue and operating income.

For the fiscal Q4 2023, WW reported a loss per share of $0.06, which still outperformed analysts' expectations of a $0.11 loss per share. Revenue for the quarter was reported at $206 million, aligning closely with the consensus estimate of $206.89 million.

The company ended the quarter with 3.8 million subscribers, which includes 67 thousand Clinical subscribers.

The company’s adjusted gross margin stood at 61.4%.

Looking forward, WW International has set its FY2024 revenue forecast in the range of $830 million to $860 million, which is substantially below the analyst consensus of $924 million.

Its operating income for the year is anticipated to be between $100 million and $110 million.

WW said its financial guidance takes into account changes in the company's technology organization, specifically updates to its capitalized labor rate expectations.

As a result, approximately $9.0 million in expenses, previously anticipated to be capitalized, will now be recorded on the income statement in 2024. It's important to note that this adjustment in accounting practices will not affect the company's cash flow, WW said.

In additional company news, WW International announced that Director Oprah Winfrey will not seek re-election at the upcoming annual shareholders' meeting in May 2024.

Oprah Winfrey has been a significant presence on the company's board since 2015, and her decision marks the end of her tenure in this role.

“I look forward to continuing to advise and collaborate with WeightWatchers and CEO Sima Sistani in elevating the conversation around recognizing obesity as a chronic condition, working to reduce stigma, and advocating for health equity,” said Oprah Winfrey.

In their analysis of the report, Morgan Stanley analysts cut the price target on the stock from $13 to $6.5 but stressed there’s still value for patient investors, mainly due to strength in WW’s Clinical business.

“We estimate that Clinic will add ~$100M in revenue and ~$20M in EBITDAS annually through FY26 as continued subscriber ramp translates into incremental FCF generation,” analysts wrote.

“Although it is still early innings, we believe the Clinical segment could drive value for patient investors with risk tolerance.”

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