Enforced store closures did little to dampen sales at JD Sports with the retailer raising its profit expectations for the full year.

The sportswear retailer recorded a 5% rise in like-for-like sales in the 22 weeks to January 2 as customers “readily” switched between physical and digital shopping.

JD Sports has raised its profit guidance for the full year to January 30, 2021, from £295m to £400m.

The retailer was forced to close UK bricks-and-mortar stores during the November lockdown and over the festive period in tier-four regions but said it continued to see positive demand across both its channels when restrictions allowed.

Assuming the impact of the pandemic and enforced store closures continue until at least Easter, JD Sports has predicted its headline profit before tax for the next financial year to January 31, 2022, will be between 5% and 10% ahead of this year.

JD Sports said in its update: “Looking ahead, it is clear that operational restrictions from the Covid-19 pandemic will also be a material factor through at least the first quarter of the year to January 29, 2022. 

“Whilst we are confident that we have the proposition to continue to attract consumers throughout this period, the process to scale down activity in stores and scale up the digital channels, often at extremely short notice, presents significant challenges. 

“We are indebted to all of our colleagues in our different territories who have had to adopt new ways of working.”