Belfast Telegraph

Superdry Sport standalone stores to be launched by fashion retailer

Fashion retailer SuperGroup has announced plans to launch a chain of standalone sportswear stores as it looks to cash in on the lucrative fitness market.

The company, which is behind the Superdry brand, said it will open a raft of Superdry Sport standalone stores in a move aimed at accelerating its "global lifestyle" strategy.

The first Superdry Sport standalone franchise will be in Grenoble, opening in October, and the group plans to roll out up to four more stores by Christmas before a wider round of openings next year.

The firm pointed to SuperGroup's two largest markets, the UK and Germany, for sport at 9.4 billion US dollars (£7.2 billion) and 11.2 billion US dollars (£8.6 billion) respectively.

The world's largest market for sportswear is the US, one of SuperGroup's "development markets", at 103.6 billion US dollars (£79.6 billion).

Chief executive Euan Sutherland told the Press Association the expansion will come in the guise of "shops in shops, franchise outlets and an extended online presence".

SuperGroup made the announcement alongside full-year results, which saw t he company report a 53.1% rise in pre-tax profits to £84.8 million for the 52 weeks to April 29 while sales rose 27.4% to £752 million.

Like-for-like retail sales grew by 12.7%.

On Brexit, Mr Sutherland said he had not seen any slowdown in consumer confidence in the UK.

He added: "The economic environment has been tough and the political backdrop uncertain.

"The Brexit vote and fluctuating exchange rates have had the most significant direct impact.

"The Superdry brand has proved resilient while the increased exposure of the business to different countries, markets and currencies has been important in providing some insulation from that impact."

SuperGroup has a presence in 62 countries, with 863 stores and concessions globally.