Mar 26, 2018

JD Sports leaps into US with ‘transformational’ Finish Line deal

JD Sports, the UK-based sportswear retailer, has snapped up The Finish Line, a US shoe store chain, for almost $560m in a "Transformational" deal that "Immediately offers [JD] a major presence" in America. Finish Line has more than 550 stores across the US and is the exclusive retailer of athletic shoes for Macy's the department store, operating 375 branded concessions and almost 200 unbranded outlets. Finish Line, listed on Nasdaq, had a market cap of about $425m at the end of trading on Friday, the last trading day before the deal was announced. Jonathan Pritchard, an analyst at Peel Hunt, said the deal represented a "Sensible price for a material presence in the [US] market via some assets that need a shot in the arm". "This year has been a tricky one for Finish Line so far but, if guidance is met, the deal looks a sensibly priced entry point into a market that JD must embrace to be considered a genuinely global player."

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