Peloton loses $8bn in value as it back-pedals on growth expectations

Peloton Interactive, the maker of connected fitness equipment including exercise bikes, has endured a bloodbath for its shares after a cut to its growth forecasts as gyms reopen following pandemic disruption.

The company, which won big as COVID lockdowns forced fitness fanatics to stay home, slashed its full-year sales expectations by up to $1bn (£743m) on Thursday night.

It admitted that demand for its products including treadmills, the subject of recent safety concerns, had slowed faster than anticipated.

The revelation forced its shares down by as much as 31% in extended Wall Street trading.

It left Peloton’s market value almost $8bn (£6bn) lower within a matter of minutes.

The company’s subscriber growth during the three months to the end of September was its weakest quarterly performance in the two years since it floated on the stock market.

It reported a net loss of $376m compared to a $69m profit a year earlier.

Peloton expected sales between $4.4bn and $4.8 billion for 2021 as a whole, compared with $5.4bn.

Chief financial officer Jill Woodworth told investors: “It is clear that we underestimated the reopening impact on our company and the overall industry.

Rising vaccinations and easing curbs have encouraged people to go back to gyms this year, hitting Peloton’s growth and boosting the earnings of gym-based rivals.

The company has tried to cushion the blow by cutting the price of its popular bike and ramping up its advertising spending.

Peloton has also grappled with the global chip crunch, supply disruptions and rising freight costs that have piled on the expenses.

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