JD Sports acquires stake in Yorkshire-headquartered Gym King

Jay Parker
X The Business Desk

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Gym King, a growing lifestyle performance brand, has secured a multi-million pound investment from FTSE 100 listed JD Sports.

The investment will see JD take a significant minority stake in the business. This strategic partnership is designed to fast track growth and international expansion, specifically into the USA, Europe and Asia where JD already has a large footprint with over 2,500 stores, complemented by localised trading websites.

Established by Jay Parker in 2015, Leeds-headquartered Gym King specialises in leisure and performance wear.

Parker said: “This strategic partnership will help Gym King capitalise on the huge opportunity ahead of us, becoming a world renowned ‘Lifestyle Performance’ brand.

“Our core brand values – Mindset, Resilience & Community – align perfectly with the JD business and consumer.

“We have continued to see impressive growth over the last 12 months with a focus on our own online, direct to consumer offering alongside our premium wholesale distribution to selected retail partners. The clear synergies with JD Sports will create a strong platform for accelerated growth.”

Peter Cowgill, executive chairman of Bury-headquartered JD Sports Fashion PLC, added: “We have long admired the Gym King business and have increasingly recognised its potential as we’ve worked together in recent years.

“Investing in Gym King was a natural follow on to strengthen our partnership and is testament to the work Jay and his team have put in over recent years.

“The future for Gym King has a great number of opportunities and we are delighted to be part of that journey.”

Gym King was advised by PwC Corporate Finance and Freeths LLP. PwC, which acted as the lead financial adviser, also provided commercial due diligence, financial due diligence and tax advice.

The PwC team advising on the deal comprised Tom Copeland, Rick Jones, Iffy Hussein and Aisha Chipampe. The financial due diligence was led by Joel Smith and commercial due diligence by Jac Windsor.

JD Group Plc was advised by Addleshaw Goddard LLP.

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