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‘Tough trading’ hits full-year profits at Sports Direct

Sports Direct’s underlying pre-tax profit fell by 8.4% to £275.2m for the year to April 24, after it suffered a “particularly tough year”.

Sports Direct

Group sales rose 2.5% to £2.9bn. In the sports retail part of the business sales increased 3.9% to £2.5bn, while sales in the brands segment were up 2.3% to £232m. However sales in the premium lifestyle part of the firm, which includes Cruise and Flannels, fell 12.7% to £181m.

Chief executive Dave Forsey said: “The group has delivered a disappointing full year financial performance, impacted primarily by a tough trading environment in the second half across our sports retail businesses.

“Our continued investment in upgrading and relocating stores, including key location doors such as Leeds and Plymouth, has been well received by our leading third party suppliers.

“Unfortunately our disappointing results have meant that the group has not achieved the first EBITDA target set by the 2015 share scheme, which is a key long term share-based incentive scheme that rewards eligible staff for their hard work and commitment, and is based on the achievement of four consecutive full year EBITDA targets.

“This is very disappointing as the share scheme is a significant part of our high performance and reward culture, and we are working to replace this arrangement with a new incentive scheme to continue to reward our people for their commitment and performance.

“I would like to thank all of our people for being part of the Sports Direct team in what has been a particularly tough year for the group.”

Since year end Forsey announced he would forgo his £3.8m worth of shares due to him in September 2017 under the 2011 Share Scheme, to show he is “taking responsibility” for the “disappointing” results.

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