JD Sports to sell 6% of share capital for expansion

Bury-based FTSE 100 retailer JD Sports Fashion Plc said late on Wednesday it intends to sell new shares in the firm “in order to invest in the expansion of the group and to capitalise on acquisition opportunities, as it builds on the success of its international growth strategy.”

JD Sports said: “The placing shares are expected to represent approximately 6.0 per cent. of the company’s existing issued share capital …

“The placing will be conducted through an accelerated bookbuild process which will be launched immediately following this announcement … 

“Investec Bank plc and Peel Hunt LLP are acting as joint global co-ordinators and joint bookrunners in connection with the placing.”

On Monday, JD Sports said it signed a “conditional agreement” to buy Baltimore-based DTLR Villa LLC for $495 million to further expand its presence in the United States.

The acquisition of DTLR is JD Sports’ second US purchase in less than two months after it bought West Coast-focused Shoe Palace in December.

JD Sports added: “The group’s global expansion strategy has been a major factor in the significant growth of the group’s profit before tax and exceptional items, which has increased from £100m in the year ended 31 January 2015 to £439m in the financial year ended 1 February 2020 …

“The directors of the group believe there are a number of potentially attractive acquisition opportunities that will become available in due course and which will continue to support the group’s successful global expansion strategy.

“The net proceeds of the placing, in conjunction with the group’s available cash resources (net cash of £1,000m at December 2020) and debt facilities (principally a £700m syndicated Revolving Credit Facility in the UK which is committed to 6 November 2024) will be used to capitalise on the acquisition opportunities available and invest further in the international expansion of the group.”