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JD Sports’ profit to top £1bn this year

JD Sports storefront

JD Sports Fashion has revealed it is expecting profit to exceed £1 billion for the first time this year, following demand for trainers and clothing from its young shoppers.

In the 52 weeks that ended 28 January 2023, the omnichannel retailer posted a record result of £991.4 million for its profit-before-tax, up from £947.2 million in the previous year.

According to the retailer, this is largely driven by the enduring strength of its Sports Fashion fascias which delivered an aggregate profit before tax and adjusted items of £827.6 million, compared with £774.4 million last year, largely as a consequence of the post-pandemic recovery.

The group also saw a 15% rise in organic sales growth.

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Revenues for 2022/23 sat at £10.1 billion, an increase from £8.6 billion, with the retailer stating it was reassured with trading in its new financial year to date.

However, JD Sports chair Andrew Higginson stated, whilst the company is “encouraged by the resilient nature of the consumer demand” in the current period to date, it remains “conscious of the headwinds that prevail at this time including the general global macro-economic and geopolitical situation.”

This comes as the retailer has seen major structural changes including the appointment of a new CEO, Regis Schultz, which followed the exit of executive chairman Peter Cowgill.

During the period, CFO Neil Greenhalgh also informed the board that he wished to step down from his role which he held since November 2018. As a result, the sportswear retailer named BLG Group’s Dominic Platt as its new CFO.

“To further increase the group’s profitability when the first half was impacted by the well-publicised international supply chain challenges, which resulted in the reduced availability of certain key footwear styles, gives me great confidence in both the strength of our market-leading sports fashion proposition and the expertise of our colleagues,” Schultz said.

He also added that he expected further small price rises this year, revealing that selling prices this year were currently between 5% and 10% higher compared to last year.

The company added: “We are now starting the next, and distinct chapter in the growth story of JD.

“The business is in fine health, with a brand and proposition that is clearly loved by consumers, and with the financial resources to deliver further expansion in under-penetrated and strategically important markets.”

This comes as JD Sports announced last week that it is to acquire French sportswear retailer Courir in a €520 million (£453 million) deal.

Image credit: Shutterstock

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