Belfast Telegraph

Sports retailer JJB banks on media blitz to aid turnaround

Sportswear retailer JJB said it had ramped up promotional activity over recent weeks in order to keep its turnaround strategy on track.

The group, which last year stayed afloat thanks to a restructuring deal with landlords, described trading conditions since the start of August as volatile and warned sales were likely to fall back without stimulation.

The promotional strategy for the autumn and Christmas period has been backed by the company's main lender, Bank of Scotland, which has waived a covenant test due next month so the company can press ahead with its plans.

At the start of its three-year turnaround, JJB said it reduced losses for the six months to August 1 to £24m, from £42.9m a year earlier.

Like-for-like sales from continuing operations rose 14.4% as the company's 'serious about sport' strategy and improvements in product availability helped deliver evidence of "steady" progress.

However, the increase in same-store sales slowed to 6% between August 30 and September 26 as JJB highlighted the current volatility in trading.