• Ashley has acknowledged that working conditions at the retailer’s Shirebrook warehouse could be better in a letter to staff
  • Sports Direct chief executive Dave Forsey will give up his £4m bonus
  • Ashley said the sports retailer has had a “difficult year”


Sports Direct owner Mike Ashley admitted the retailer’s working conditions could be improved ahead of today’s parliamentary hearing.

The owner of the sporting goods retailer acknowledged there had been issues with security and search measures at its Shirebrook warehouse in a letter to the business’s 27,000 staff, according to the Telegraph.

Ashley also revealed that the retailer’s boss, Dave Forsey, would not be taking his four-year share bonus of up to £4m after what had been “a difficult year for the company”.

This letter comes ahead of today’s parliamentary hearing, which Ashley said he would not attend last Friday on account of his lawyer being unavailable before reversing his decision yesterday.

The enquiry, helmed by Business, Innovation and Skills committee chairman and MP Iain Wright, will discuss working conditions at Sport Direct’s Shirebrook warehouse. Ashley has said he has “always believed we have nothing to hide”.

In his letter Ashley thanked staff for their “hard work” and said he would be attending the parliamentary hearing to “defend the good name of Sports Direct and all of yourselves”.

Ashley was formally ordered before MPs in March and initially dismissed the inquiry as ‘showboating’ before offering a conditional acceptance to the invitation.

However, negotiations over his attendance broke down despite lengthy correspondence with Wright after he declined Ashley’s invite to visit the warehouse in question the day before the scheduled hearing.