JD Sports bosses unveil five-year plan in key City presentation

Regis Schultz

The senior management team of Bury-based JD Sports Fashion has outlined ithe group’s strategy in a Capital Markets event, including plans to achieve £1bn of cash generation each year and open up to 350 stores per annum.

Led by chief executive, Régis Schultz, they will present ‘A New Distinct Chapter in the Growth Story of JD’ which covers the next five years for the sports and athleisurewear retailer, focusing on how it will enhance its position as the leading global sports-fashion specialist.

The presentation will focus on four main strategic pillars:

  • JD brand first
  • Complementary concepts
  • Beyond physical retail
  • People, partners and communities

As part of the event, the management team will set out further details on its growth strategy and key objectives for the next five years which include:

  • Double digit revenue growth
  • Double digit market share in key regions
  • Double digit operating margin
  • Capex of £500m to £600m per annum with 50% to 60% of spend focused on store expansion in underpenetrated markets with 250 to 350 new JD stores per annum
  • Cash generation from operating activities of £1bn per annum

Régis Schultz said: “Today marks a new, distinct chapter in the growth story of JD as we set our plans to become the leading global sports-fashion powerhouse.
“Building on our strong existing position and attractive long term market dynamics, we see significant growth opportunities ahead by expanding JD internationally, notably in North America and Europe.

“We will also be enhancing our omnichannel retail offering, investing in technology and analytics, and leveraging our long term strategic brand partnerships, to better serve more customers.

“Our track record of disciplined investment and strong retail execution means that JD is extremely well positioned to capitalise on its material headroom for growth globally and continue delivering value for shareholders.”

Former B&Q executive and French national, Mr Schultz, took over as JD Sports chief executive in August 2022 following the departure of former executive chairman Peter Cowgill in May.

He was an executive at DIY chain B&Q, part of FTSE-100 group Kingfisher. He also ran French supermarket chain Monoprix and joined JD from Dubai-based retail conglomerate Al-Futtaim Group.

Cowgill had run the business without a chief executive since 2014 and had been embroiled in spats with the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

Following his departure Kath Smith was appointed interim CEO, while former Morrisons chairman, Andy Higginson, joined the board as chair on July 11. He was involved in the search for the new chief executive who is now leading the strategic direction of the Greater Manchester group, formed in 1985 by John Wardle and David Makin.