JD Sports sells Dutch chain to Iberia subsidiary
JD Sports Fashion said on Thursday that it’s selling Dutch business Sports Unlimited Retail BV (SUR) to Iberian Sports Retail Group SL (ISRG). That’s less of a change that it might at first appear given that the Iberian business is also majority owned by JD.
The transaction is more about changing the management of the Dutch operation to reflect its product profile that’s more aligned with that of Iberian Sports.
JD said SUR, which is a wholly owned company based in the Netherlands, operates under the Aktiesport and Perry Sport names, while ISRG is its Spanish subsidiary in which it has a 50.02% stake.
It explained that the rationale for the transaction is that ISRG is “more focused on the sporting goods sector than the core JD brand and therefore JD feel that the management team of ISRG will be better placed to drive growth and higher returns in SUR longer term. However, as the parent to ISRG, JD will continue to make strategic decisions regarding the company's future”.
The ‘sale’ price is €16.5 million, which is expected to be payable on completion and which ISRG will fund from existing cash balances and resources.
The deal will complete at the end of the month and JD executive chairman Peter Cowgill said: “We have an excellent management team at ISRG and, having successfully integrated the Sport Zone business into its operations, this is the right time for ISRG to further expand its geographical reach. By consolidating our sporting goods businesses under the ISRG umbrella, we are absolutely confident that the transfer of SUR to ISRG will bring long-term development opportunities to both the team at SUR and their international brand partners.”
Although JD owns a controlling stake in the Spanish operation, it does have other shareholders, including Sonae - SGPS, SA and Balaiko Firaja Invest.
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