JD Sports acquires Go Outdoors

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JD Sports has announced that is has acquired retail group Go Outdoors for a total of £112.3 million.

In recent years the outdoor retailer has hugely bolstered its bicycle business, adding in store workshops, hiring industry talent and developing house labels such as Calibre that have tended to perform well in consumer magazine tests.

Originally established in 1998 by Paul Caplan and John Graham and backed by YFM Equity Partners and, latterly, 3i Group Plc, Go Outdoors has grown from a single store to become a nationwide omnichannel retailer catering for the outdoor enthusiast. The group has 58 stores across the UK at the time of purchase. Both founders will now leave the business.

In the 53 week stretch leading to January 31st, 2016, Go Outdoors recorded a consolidated revenue of £202.2 million, an operating profit of £6.1 million, a pre-tax profit of £4.9 million and has gross assets totaling £76.4 million. Net debt of around £16 million was taken on as part of the transaction.

Peter Cowgill, Executive Chairman, commented: “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. I am excited by the future prospects this holds for the JD Group.”