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JD Sports steps back into the race for top sports retailer

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With the rise of sports fashion this season, JD’s fashion department demonstrated a “very pleasing performance” as its like-for-like store sales grew by 10% for the second year in a row. Outdoor goods also made “encouraging progress” during the year. Further management appointments and restructuring helped to keep the sports retailer afloat in a “challenging market”.

Total revenue at JD Sports increased by 20% to £1.82bn for the year to 30 January, as operating profit before exceptional items rocketed by 56% to £158m.

The retailer’s profits exceeded analysts’ expectations by 5% as they noted that years of investment into the business is finally starting to produce quantitative results.

The group continued its European expansion with the addition of 38 JD stores across Europe in 2015. Its total capital expenditure for the year rose to £83.5m from £70.2m last year. This cost is expected to increase further as JD’s international growth continues.

It appears that the sports chain is likely to overtake rival Sports Direct, overruling Mike Ashley’s previous bullish comment “I’ll finish off JJB first and then I’ll move on to JD”. JD’s recent results shows that this is not likely.

“Given that last year’s result was a record for our Group then the performance in the year was very pleasing, further demonstrating the increasing influence of the JD fascia in the UK and beyond. During the year we have expanded our international presence with additional stores in existing European territories together with a number of stores in new countries. We continue to gain traction in Europe and are confident of the opportunities that exist for the JD fascia in these markets” said Executive Chairman Peter Cowgill.

“We are encouraged by the continued positive trading across our core fascias in the year to date and the Board continues to believe that the Group is very well positioned for profitable growth.”

 

Published on Thursday 14 April by Talya Misiri

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