JD Sports executive chair Peter Cowgill has sold 10 million of his shares in the sporting goods retailer, over half of his shareholding.

Cowgill sold the shares at an average price of 213.22p each, netting him £21.3m. JD Sports offered no reason for the share disposal in its statement following the transaction.

Cowgill, who has led the company since 2004, now holds a 0.19% stake in the company with 9.7 million shares.

JD Sports’ shares fell 7% to 196.50p on Thursday following the news of Cowgill’s shock share sale.

The move came after JD Sports upgraded its profit forecasts for the year following a strong Christmas performance. The retailer raised profit expectations for the full year to January 29, 2022, to £875m from £810m.

The company reported that revenues were up “more than 10%” in the 22 weeks to January 1 compared to the same period, pre-pandemic, in 2019.

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