Following today’s release of JD Sports figures for the 48 weeks to 5 January 2019, Amy Higginbotham, retail analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, comments: ‘‘JD Sports has reported a healthy set of results for FY2018/19 so far, as successful trading over Black Friday and Christmas – which saw positive l-f-ls – bolstered growth during H2, following an impressive 35% rise in revenue achieved in H1. The sports fashion and outdoor specialist indicates that its performance overseas continues to be positive as it pursues international expansion – it recently opened two stores in Thailand and its first five stores in the US – while continued investment in its domestic operations and its multibrand premium offer ensure that it remains strong in its core UK market.
“JD Sports indicated that gross profit margins would remain flat on last year thanks to its reluctance to hastily enter into heavy discounting, a strategy which has hurt competitor Footasylum as it issued a profit warning last week. In addition, JD Sports has maintained its performance in spite of increased competition from clothing specialists and online pureplays such as Gymshark and boohoo.com, who are expanding their athleisure ranges. Unlike Sports Direct, JD Sports’ multichannel and multibrand offer is strong. It includes the use of tablets in-store, allowing shoppers to browse its wider collection, and product exclusives from brands such as Nike. This helps JD Sports remain relevant and maintain its appeal, especially among younger consumers.
“With less than three weeks until the end of FY2018/19, the outlook for JD Sports is positive – group profit before tax for the full year are expected to be at the upper end of market expectations, currently between £325m and £352m.”