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Chloe Shakesby

JD Sports scores 85% net cash increase with "significant" retention of profitability

A UK sports fashion retailer has announced an 85 per cent increase in net cash as it reports “significant” retention of profitability through the pandemic.

JD Sports announced today (13 April) that its net cash levels rose by 85 per cent, building 2020’s £429.9m up to £795.4m.

The company also reported an increase in revenues for the year, growing to £6,167.3m up from last year’s £6110.8m.

This comes after the brand’s opening of its first flagship store in Times Square, New York.

Profits before tax dipped slightly, dropping by 3 per cent from £438.8m to £421.3, which the company says represents “significant retention” after a year affected by the pandemic.

JD Sport has predicted that its 2022 profits will be in the range of £475m to £500m.

Peter Cowgill, executive chairman, commented: “The global Covid-19 pandemic and, more recently, the UK’s formal exit from the European Union have presented a series of unprecedented challenges which have severely tested all aspects of our business including our multichannel capabilities, the robustness of our operational infrastructure and the resilience of our colleagues.

“However, at all times, the group has strived to do the right thing for all stakeholders.

“Notwithstanding these well publicised challenges, a number of positive themes have been increasingly apparent through the year which gives us confidence that, as we begin to emerge from the worst of the disruption, JD is at the pinnacle of the global sports fashion industry.

“We have a market leading multichannel proposition which continues to enhance its relevance to consumers and has the necessary agility to progress in an environment where the retailing of international brands may see permanent global structural change.

“Our positive outlook is reflected by the fact that, even with the unique circumstances of store closures for a substantial period of the year, the group has retained substantially all of its record profitability from the prior year with a profit before tax and exceptional items of £421.3m (2020: £438.8m).

“We are indebted to all of our teams in our different territories for their determination and resilience in dealing with the potentially life changing challenges of the past year and we fully acknowledge the contribution from all of our colleagues in the delivery of this excellent result.

“Our recent completed acquisitions of Shoe Palace and DTLR in the United States together with the conditional acquisition of Sizeer in Central and Eastern Europe are important steps in our evolution which will transform our consumer connection in these markets and further develop our key brand relationships.

“Whilst we must recognise the substantial level of temporary store closures to date and ongoing, we remain confident that we are well placed to benefit from the opportunities that prevail and, at this early stage, our current best estimate is that the group headline profit before tax for the full year to 29 January 2022 will be in the range of £475m to £500m.”

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