Losses widen again at JJB Sports

JJB Sports
Image caption JJB has shut 41 of the 43 stores earmarked for closure

Troubled sports retailer JJB Sports has reported widening losses and warned of critical trading periods to come.

Pre-tax losses for the six months to the end of July came in at £66.5m, compared with £24m last year.

JJB said that its performance over Christmas, the January sales and next year's Olympics and European football championships would be critical.

The Wigan-based retailer said conditions were worse than had been expected.

As part of its turnaround plan, 41 of the 43 stores earmarked for closure have now ceased trading.

Like-for-like sales, which measure sales in stores that have been open for more than a year, fell by 17.7%.

"Our results for the half year have been impacted by the closing of unprofitable stores and the sell-out of old and obsolete stock," said JJB chief executive Keith Jones.

"Despite the consumer environment being extremely challenging and expected to remain so for the foreseeable future, our re-sized store portfolio and other cost-saving initiatives have allowed us to manage the business and maintain tight financial controls."

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