JD Sports to smash profit expectations after bumper Christmas

Retailer says sales in festive period were 12pc higher than a year earlier

JD Sports has told investors its profits before tax and exceptional items will be higher than the £90m currently expected after a bumper Christmas.

The FTSE 250 sports retailer said like-for-like sales in the crucial festive trading period, which spans the five weeks to January 3, were 12pc higher than a year earlier.

However it warned that the company would post some cost increases “to support the larger and more international business”.

Peter Cowgill, executive chairman, said the brand enjoyed “great momentum” throughout last year and that this continued into Christmas.

“This result is testimony to the strength of the JD Brand and its commitment to providing its customers with unrivalled choice, quality and excitement as the leading retailer of sports fashion,” he added.

The latest update follows a year of strong growth for JD. Between March and July the retailer’s pre-tax profit of £16.4m was nearly triple that of a year earlier.

While rival Sports Direct focuses on replica kits and discount sportswear, JD targets more fashion-conscious customers with higher-end goods.

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