JJB Sports reported that total group comparable store sales decreased 7.5% compared to last year for the period between July 28 and Dec. 7, 2008. This decrease consisted of a 6.7% increase in revenue for health clubs and an 8.9% decrease in retail sales. The core retail gross margin achieved during the same period was 210 basis points higher than last year.
The stock holding in the retail business is 28% lower than last year.
Given the difficult trading conditions, JJB started its annual sale early, two weeks ago. The retailer was pleased with the result, which will lower its gross margins, but said it is looking to a strong sales performance in January to achieve market expectations for net income.
The company's lenders, Barclays, HBOS and Kaupthing waived the Dec. 14 due date on the Kaupthing £20 million bridging facility, in exchange for JJBs agreement to repay the note on a pro rata basis starting Dec. 10.