Sports Direct sales jump as board squares up to shareholders

Guy Bentley
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Sports Direct has reported a jump in sales of 10.3 per cent to £360m for the nine weeks ended 30 March. The sports retailer saw gross profit rise 11.5 per cent £147m.

The company enjoyed strong increases from the brands division and sports retail sales. Premium Lifestyle sales also rose by 0.7 per cent to £27m.

The group said there had been no material change in its financial position since the end of the last reporting period on 19 February.

However, the positive news was tempered by the boards regret over the decision to reject a bonus scheme that would have awarded Sports Direct founder Mike Ashley, a payout of £70m.

Dave Forsey, chief executive of Sports Direct, said:

During the period, the board was extremely disappointed to withdraw the resolution regarding a proposed share scheme award to Mike Ashley. The most disappointing aspect was where large shareholders gave their support only to then vote differently.

The group remains confident that it will be able to deliver its full year internal underlying EBITDA target of £310m.

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