Strong online sales during coronavirus lockdowns have seen sportswear retailer JD Sports forecast full-year profit to be “significantly ahead” of market expectations of about £295 million pounds.

The retailer said customers “readily switched” between its stores and online business in the run-up to Christmas.

The company told shareholders that it expects to post a headline pre-tax profit of at least £400 million for the year to January 30th in a bulletin this morning.

The retailer also said that its UK stores are “likely” to be shut until at least Easter adding that closures of its stores in other countries are “possible at any time” as it warned that Covid-19 continues to create an uncertain outlook.

Total revenues, on a like-for-like basis, rose by more than five per cent in the 22 weeks to January 2 compared with the same period last year.

In a statement to the stock market, it said: “Looking ahead, it is clear that operational restrictions from the Covid-19 pandemic will also be a material factor through at least the first quarter of the year to January 22 2022.

“Whilst we are confident that we have the proposition to continue to attract consumers throughout this period, the process to scale down activity in stores and scale up the digital channels, often at extremely short notice, presents significant challenges.



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