JJB Sports Heads into Administration after Store Sales Plan Fails

By Community | October 2, 2012

JJB Sports have fallen into administration and have had to sell 20 of the chain’s 153 national stores to it’s rival Sports Direct.

Sports Direct, a long-time arch rival of the chain, scooped up 20 of the beleaguered chain’s stores in a deal worth £24 million, saving around 550 jobs, including those of warehouse staff. Sports Direct has also bought up all of the remaining JJB stock and Slazenger Golf brand licences. It has also purchased the freehold of JJB’s Wigan headquarters.

The chain’s remaining 133 stores were unable to be saved and were closed with immediate effect.

The company has been struggling to stay afloat for a number of years, after a number of poor acquisitions made between 2007 and 2009 saddled it with significant debts. 

The administration is being handled by financial services firm, KPMG. David McCorquodale, a corporate finance partner at KPMG who led the sales process, said that more than 100 parties had expressed interest in buying parts of the company, but none had been viable. 

“Unfortunately the level of cash and further operational restructuring required to rescue a more substantial part of the business was too much risk for most interested parties,” he said. “We hope to be able to sell the leasehold interests of some of the remaining stores, which may result in re-employment of some staff.”