US MARKET HAS NEW MEMBER, SPORTS DIRECT

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In a $101m (£79m) deal, Sports Direct has taken up the US market. It is now present in sports clothing, Bob’s Stores, outdoor equipment chains and Eastern Mountain Sports.

In one of the research reports Analysts at Peel Hunt pointed out that Sports Direct has already decided to take its UK business more up market. Sports Direct at present has about 700 sports stores in the UK and continental Europe. Also, they have more than 400 operating stores under the name of Sportsdirect.com. They own various brand names including Slazenger, Lonsdale and Everlast.

Under this deal, Sport Direct gets about 50 stores, where it can sell sportswear and camping equipment. Mike Ashley’s chain said the “footprint” in US bricks and mortar retail would give it a “platform from which to grow US online sales”.

Nicholas Hyett, equity analyst, Hargreaves Lansdown said Sports Direct had picked up a “bargain out of bankruptcy proceedings,” and said Sports Direct had been involved in the US sports retail market before, through its stake in Dick’s Sporting Goods, “but this time round it has decided to jump in directly”.

However, he added that not like some of the company’s investments that are done previously the “rationale for today’s deal is pretty clear.”

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Alec Robins

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