JD reflects on damage caused by last month’s rioters…

September 22, 2011

The Retail Inspector – High-Street-1

Sports Fashion retailer JD Sports announced last month that around £700,000 of stock was looted in last month’s riots, which saw the capital engulfed in disorder.

In total, 16 stores in London, Manchester, Nottingham and Birmingham were hit by the anarchy on the streets, with six London stores suffering “very significant thefts”.

Further to this, its Woolwich store in London is still closed as fire damage is repaired but the rest of the stores had reopened their doors by Sunday 21st August.

However, JD Sports did explain that had it not have been for some pre-emptive measures taken to ensure rioters didn’t gain access to its stores, the damage would have been much worse.

JD Sports explained: “We are currently working with our insurers on the subsequent claim, covering theft of stock, repair costs and business interruption. We do not believe that the riots will have a material adverse impact on our outturn for the current year.”

But it’s not all doom and gloom for the Sports Fashion retailer as despite the riots and store closures, profits at JD Sports rose to £20.1m in the six months to the end of July, up from £16.6m in the same period last year.

Sales took a 15pc boost to £439.8m, with like-for-like sales excl. VAT rising by a creditable 1.6pc in seven weeks to September 17th.

However, there was a decline of 17pc in pre-tax profits, excluding exceptional items, to £16m in the half year to July 30 as margins were squeezed through the ever faltering consumer confidence, and of course the VAT increase.

So as the retail world recovers from the chaos caused by the rioters, we have to look forward to the coming Christmas period as a real chance to recover heavy losses sustained.

However, some smaller retailers will have been hit more than others and won’t be able to continue trading, are thoughts are still with those who will have no doubt lost their livelihoods amidst the disorder.

In other news…

Fancy a quick lunch with minimal queuing times? Well now might be a good time to get yourself down to Greggs.

The bakery retailer has announced that is now accepting card and contactless payments throughout its nationwide network of 1500 shops.

The introduction of contactless payments, which enable customers to ‘touch and pay’ in less than a second, will help to reduce queue times during peak trading periods.