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JD Sports raises profit guidance after strong Christmas

JD Sports has announced its full year profit before tax and exceptional items is likely to exceed current consensus market expectations of £136m by up to 10%, following strong Christmas trading.

JD Sports on Oxford Street in London

JD Sports on Oxford Street in London

JD Sports on Oxford Street in London

Like-for-like store sales in the UK and Europe increased 10.6% for the five weeks to January 2.

The sportswear firm did not comment on online sales for the period.

JD Sports has also decided to discontinue a project to replace the group’s core IT systems. The business said it has a “stronger IT team now in place, and significant developments have been introduced to its current systems.”

A statement continued: “We have concluded that we can manage further growth and change with more agility and lower cost using our internally developed systems and thereby minimising the change risk to the business.”

The closure of the project will result in a one off exceptional charge of £12m, £10m of which has incurred in prior years.

Peter Cowgill, executive chairman, said: “This performance particularly reflects the increasing strength of the JD Fascia and our continuing commitment to delivering a unique and often exclusive sports and fashion premium brand offer which enthuses and excites both customers and suppliers.”

Drapers also revealed this week that JD Sports is to close its young fashion mini-chain Ark.

JD Sports will announce its full year results for the year to January 30 in April.

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