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Profits rise but fashion dips at JD Sports Fashion

JD Sports Fashion saw like-for-like sales nudge up 0.8% for the six weeks to September 12 after notching up a 14.5% increase in pre-tax profit to £14.2m in the 26 weeks to August 1.

However like-for-like sales at its fashion chains, which include Bank and Scotts, fell 2.4% over the six week period but it sports chains, which include JD and Size?, recorded a 1.3% uplift in comparable sales.

“The sports fascias remain the core of group profitability. Their strength lies in our unique blend of sports and fashion brands, the strong brand relationships which allow us to develop exclusive products, and our exclusive own brands and superior visual merchandising.”

JD Sports Fashion chairman Peter Cowgill

Over the six month period, group sales jumped 8.4% to £324m and group like-for-likes rose 0.7%.

The like-for-like growth was made up of a 0.3% rise across the sports business and a 3.1% increase across its fashion chains. JD also narrowed operating losses at its fashion businesses from £3.3m to £2.7m over the period.

Group gross margin was maintained at 48.2%.

JD Sports Fashion chairman Peter Cowgill said the “positive performance” enabled the retailer to “continue to look positively at the many acquisition opportunities available”.

He added: “The sports fascias remain the core of group profitability. Their strength lies in our unique blend of sports and fashion brands, the strong brand relationships which allow us to develop exclusive products, and our exclusive own brands and superior visual merchandising.”

“With challenging conditions for the consumer continuing, the result for the full year remains very dependent on the sales and margin performance in December and January.”

“Nevertheless, the Board believes that the Group is well positioned to deliver on market expectations.”

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