Sports Direct shares are a ‘buy’ as retailer brushes off unseasonal weather and early UK World Cup exit

11th December 2014

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Analysts at stockbrokers The Share Centre have cheered the latest market update from retailer Sports Direct International.

The firm, owned by billionaire Mike Ashley brushed off any market worries to report that underlying profit before tax jumped almost 10% to £160.6m over the six months to the end of October while revenues rose by 6.5% to £1.4bn and the earnings per share increased by 4.1% to 19.4p.

Commenting on the latest set of results Dave Forsey, chief executive of the group Sports Direct said: “The results for the six months were solid considering the adverse impact on performance during the period of England’s early departure from the FIFA World Cup in Brazil and the unseasonably mild weather during Autumn reducing footfall.”

Shares in the group, which operates hundreds of stores including the landmark Lillywhites located at Piccadilly Circus in central London, have eased by 12% over the past 12 months and the broker consensus has the stock in ‘buy’ territory according to Digital Look.

Helal Miah, investment research analyst at The Share Centre recommends Sports Direct as a ‘buy’ for medium risk investors looking for capital growth. He said: “In its first half results this morning, Sports Direct reported figures that were pretty much in-line with expectations. These figures should be relatively pleasing given England’s early exit from the World Cup and the unseasonably warm autumn weather dampening customer footfall. During the period the company has rolled out large format city centre stores, signed 26 new license agreements and continued to invest in inventory optimisation and product offerings. “

Following the update by 11.16am, shares in Sports Direct were flat on the day at 675p.

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