Sales growth slows at Sports Direct due to weak winter season
Sports Direct saw its gross profit increase by 7.6% to £346.9 million in its Christmas period with group sales edging up 2.6% to £771 million.
This compares to sales growth in the same period in the previous year of just over 11%.
In the 13 weeks to 25 January, sports retail sales grew by 2.7% to £643.2 million as gross profit increased by 9.4% to £297.2 million.
The premium lifestyle business fared less well with sales falling by 0.4% to £70.9 million and gross profit dropping by 2.8% to £27.6 million.
Meanwhile, the brands division's revenue increased by 4.8% to £56.9 million. Gross profit slipped by 0.9% to £22.1 million.
Sports Direct chief executive Dave Forsey said: "As we highlighted at our interim results in December, trading has been in line with management's expectations. Within Sports Retail we continue to focus on upgrading our store portfolio and integrating our business in Austria where a weak Winter sports season across Europe has proved challenging.
"While we retain the ability to invest in margin, inventory and group marketing to deliver long term sustainable growth, the Board is very confident of achieving at least our full year internal underlying EBITDA target of £360 million, before the charge for the Employee Bonus Share Schemes."
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