Sports Direct, Britain's biggest sporting goods retailer, posted a 2 percent rise in first-half profit and said it was on track to meet its target for the year. The firm, which owns Sports World and Lillywhites stores as well as
brands including Slazenger, Lonsdale, Dunlop and Everlast, said revenue
rose 8.4 percent to 888.6 million pounds.
The firm, controlled by Newcastle United soccer club owner Mike Ashley, said it was confident of reaching its full year target for underlying earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) and before costs for a staff bonus scheme, of 215 million pounds.
Sports Direct made underlying EBITDA before staff bonus scheme costs of 139.2 million pounds in the 26 weeks to October 23, up from 136.5 million pounds in the same period last year.
Said Dave Forsey, Chief Executive said: “This strong performance yet again demonstrates the success of our unique and resilient business model, and was delivered against both a tough FIFA World Cup comparison last year and an especially fragile consumer environment. The Board remains very confident of reaching our full year EBITDA target of £215m (before scheme costs) and we believe our Employee Bonus Share Schemes continues to underpin our performance.”
The firm cut its net debt by 23.3 percent to 114.3 million pounds but is not paying a dividend.
Sports Direct is looking for a boost to trade in 2012 from the Euro soccer championships and London Olympics.