JD Sports shares fall 10% as CFO plans exit

Neil Greenhalgh

Shares of Bury-based FTSE 100 retailer JD Sports Fashion plc fell about 10% on Wednesday after it announced that chief financial officer Neil Greenhalgh intends to step down next year.

The firm’s nominations committee, led by chair Andy Higginson, will now commence a process to recruit a successor.

“Neil Greenhalgh is committed to assist in this process to help ensure an orderly succession, and to work with the board and KPMG LLP in the audit and subsequent publication in Spring 2023 of JD’s financial statements for the 52 week period to 28 January 2023,” said JD Sports.

JD Sports announced in August that French businessman Régis Schultz had been appointed as the company’s new chief executive officer, joining the Bury firm from the Dubai-based conglomerate Al-Futtaim Group.

In May, JD Sports said executive chairman Peter Cowgill would step down from his role with immediate effect amid a push for stronger governance at the firm as it accelerated the separation of the roles of chair and chief executive officer.

Greenhalgh said: “The decision to step back from JD during 2023 is one that I have been considering for some time.

“I fully intend to help Andy and Régis settle into their roles and, by giving the Board advanced notice, enable a smooth transition to a new CFO.”

JD Sports chair Andy Higginson said: “Neil joined JD in 2004 and has been CFO since November 2018. He has been a key part of the team that has delivered tremendous growth in the business.

“The board would like to thank him for his constructive approach which allows us to search, recruit and induct the best replacement to support the growth plans of the business in a measured way whilst retaining all his experience and knowledge.

“In the meantime, it’s business as usual whilst the search is underway.”