Strong Online Sales Help Sports Direct Report Positive Results

Sports retailer Sports Direct released impressive results this afternoon, citing its online strategy and continued acquisition of desirable brands as the reason behind its success.

Non-executive chairman Keith Hellawell said its newly created Premium Lifestyle division was also starting to benefit from renewed systems and processes.

“Although it will take some time to fully integrate these businesses, we are targeting returning them to profit in FY13. Our investment in our Brands division gives us the means to expand our licensing business and gain a greater share of specific, if sometimes niche, markets.”

Online revenue increased by 81.8 per cent from £95.7 million to £174m in the past year. Sports Direct now offers customers 120,000 products across 700 brands.

Neil Mason, head of retail research at analysts Mintel, said Sports Direct’s figures were particularly strong when compared to its struggling rival JJB.

“It’s ambitious expansion plans both at home and abroad are likely to result in further strong sales growth looking ahead. It’s online operations have performed extremely well – more than one in ten sales are now online – with plans already in place to cope with further expansion in this area.

“The retailer will certainly be a beneficiary of the ‘summer of sport’ which the UK is experiencing, with the Olympics providing a further uplift in sales through branded merchandise. Its recent move into the Premium clothing lifestyle sector will certainly help to broaden its offer and capitalise on increasing demand in this market.”

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