Profit and sales tumble at sports retailer and outlook bleak for second half

JJB Sports has issued a profit warning in the face of falling sales and offered a downbeat assessment for the second half of its financial year, as it battles tough comparables from last year’s World Cup.

For the 26 weeks to July 29, net pre-tax profit at JJB Sports dropped to about£8 million –£3.5 million below the retailer’s original expectations. Total retail sales tumbled 6.2 per cent over the period, the sports retailer said in a trading update ahead of its interim results, to be published on September 28.

Retail store sales, excluding replica products - which were lifted during last year's World Cup – decreased by 1.3 per cent over the 26-week period.

JJB said that results for the six weeks to September 9 “has been broadly similar to those of the comparative period. We therefore believe it is prudent to assume that the outcome for the full 26-week period will be a trading result similar to that achieved in the comparative period”.

JJB wants to increase the proportion of own-brand products in its stores and is in negotiations with a number of brands to acquire their UK distribution rights.