JD Sports is a sportswear and fashion retailer which has been expanding worldwide through an aggressive acquisition strategy, particularly in North America.
It posted record group sales for the year ending 28 January 2023 (FY2022), with revenues jumping 18.2% to £10.1bn. Across its divisions, its sports fashion segment grew 19% year-on-year with sales rocketing to £9.6bn, while its outdoor division made good gains, with revenues rising 10% to £0.56bn for the year.
Pentland Group, which owns brands such as Speedo and Berghaus, holds a strategic stake in the retailer.
The sports fashion division provides the bulk of revenues, with the outdoor division suffering a turbulent period in FY2020 but showing strong signs of recovery into FY2021 and FY2022.
The Go Outdoors brand has undergone significant operational changes which led to a stint in administration in 2020 (see Go Outdoors profile).
Strong supplier relationships with the major sportswear manufacturers provide it with exclusive products and solid margins, underpinning its noteworthy performance.
JD is now looking to substantially invest in its supply chain operations to support the increase in online trade and to mitigate additional costs from UK and EU cross-border trade.
JD has acquired Xercise4Less, Livestock, DLTR Villa, Shoe Palace and Sizeer in recent years.
It was unable to finalise its acquisition of Footasylum, with the Competition and Markets Authority vetoing the acquisition in November 2021.
More recent acquisitions such as Wheelbase and Leisure Lakes in the UK see JD enhancing its presence in the premium cycling market.