JD Sports warns of a new £15m toll from Blacks Leisure buy

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The Independent Online

JD Sports Fashion expects to lose up to £15m this year from its acquisition of the outdoor specialist Blacks Leisure out of administration, but the sportswear group cheered bruised investors with a sales uplift.

The JD stores operator had already incurred an operating loss of £2.2m in the final three weeks of its financial year to 28 January from its purchase of the owner of the troubled Blacks and Millets chains. But yesterday it said it anticipated a loss of £10m in 2012-13 with the "potential for a further up to £5m charge for restructuring".

Blacks and Millets have been struggling for years, and the outdoor group's chief executive, Julia Reynolds, is leaving once the heavy lifting of its integration into JD is completed. The sportswear and fashion specialist has already closed more than 80 of the 290 Blacks and Millets stores it acquired for £20m in January.

The group said like-for-like sales rose 1.5 per cent in the 19 weeks to 9 June.