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UPDATE 3-Vans sneaker maker's revenue, profit view disappoints on pandemic hit

(Adds details from earnings call, CFO comment)

Jan 27 (Reuters) - VF Corp raised its full-year forecast for revenue and profit on Wednesday, but it came in below market estimates as the apparel maker struggles to bring in sales with the COVID-19 pandemic shuttering stores in some of its major markets.

The Vans sneaker maker’s shares fell 2% as it missed analyst expectations for third-quarter revenue, and said more than 60% of its stores are temporarily closed in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, with less than 10% of its outlets shut in North America.

Its digital revenue jumped 53% but that was not enough to counterbalance weak in-store sales, as fresh restrictions in its key U.S. and Europe markets doused a short-lived sales rebound triggered by the lifting of earlier curbs.

Still, the apparel maker hinted at a return to pre-pandemic revenue levels as early as mid- fiscal 2022, with its margins also set to hit peak levels on the back of a recovery in high-margin units, including Vans.

“Every indication is they (customers) are going to come back and that we are going to see a longer-term path, that we are as confident as ever in brick-and-mortar, and it is an important part of our overall consumer delivery,” Chief Financial Officer Scott Roe said on an earnings call.

VF now expects fiscal 2021 revenue between $9.1 billion and $9.2 billion, with the midpoint below the Refinitiv IBES estimate of $9.19 billion.

The owner of Timberland and The North Face brands also expects fiscal 2021 adjusted earnings per share of about $1.30, 6 cents below expectations. It had previously forecast revenue of at least $9 billion and per-share profit of at least $1.20.

Reporting by Mehr Bedi and Praveen Paramasivam in Bengaluru; Editing by Devika Syamnath

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