The Investment Column: Blacks boosts its performance
Tuesday 04 November 1997
Yesterday's results for the six months to the end of August show that the company is still growing, albeit at a somewhat slower pace. Profit before tax increased by 36 per cent to pounds 5.3m, and the interim dividend jumped 40 per cent to 1.75p a share. Although analysts were impressed by progress, the figures were slightly below some expectations. A rise in "administration costs" to pounds 867,000 from pounds 429,000 in the same period last year caused some concern. Blacks said these were one-off costs associated with investment in marketing and the establishment of a long-term incentive scheme.
There was some speculation that the ActiveVenture format may not have been doing as well as expected. Blacks declined to reveal like-for-like sales in the division.
Blacks was not so reticent about First Sport, which delivered another strong performance, with like-for-like sales up 11 per cent, despite strong trading during the European Football Championships last year. Observers believe there is still demand for brands such as Nike and Reebok as fashion items. Blacks is making sure customers won't have to look far: at the end of August, the group had 126 stores, up from 98 the previous year. By the year end, 138 outlets should be open.
Societe Generale Strauss Turnbull is nudging up its forecast for the year to February 1998 to pounds 13.5m. That means Blacks is trading on a forward p/e ratio of 15. Compared to rivals such as JJB Sports, that looks attractive.
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Germany sees 'visible rise' in support for far-right extremism in response to perceived 'Islamisation' of the West
iJobs Money & Business
£32000 - £35000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Services Manage...
£Neg. (DOE) + Excellent Benefits: Guru Careers: A Finance Account Manager with...
£40000 - £470000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / J2EE Devel...
£45000 - £55000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: An exciting opportunity h...