JD Sports Fashion Plc (LSE: JD), the leading British sports fashion and outdoor brands retailer, said it acquired 100% of Go Outdoors Topco Ltd for £112.3 million ($`40.4 million), with JD also assuming £16 million in debt.
“Go Outdoors is a great addition to our existing Outdoor business. The minimal overlap in store locations and their out of town, one stop retailer approach complements the work we have done on the high street with Blacks and Millets and further strengthens our offering in the Outdoor sector,” said JD executive chairman Peter Cowgill.
Based in Sheffield, Go Outdoors was originally established in 1998 by Paul Caplan and John Graham, and backed by YFM Equity Partners. More recently it was backed by private equity firm 3i Group Plc. The company has grown to become a nationwide omnichannel retailer catering to outdoor enthusiasts and specialists with 58 stores across the UK, the majority of which are in out of town retail parks. At closing, Caplan and Graham will leave the business.
For the 53 week period ended January 31, 2016, Go Outdoors reported consolidated revenues of £202.2 million, an operating profit of £6.1 million, a profit before tax of £4.9 million and gross assets of £76.4 million.
The deal will complement JD’s existing interest in the outdoor market through its Blacks, Millets, Ultimate Outdoors and Tiso businesses which in 2015 had combined revenues in excess of £155 million with 182 stores. The vast majority of JD’s existing Outdoor stores are on the high street, creating minimal crossover with those of Go Outdoors.