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Earning its stripes: the success of Sports Direct International
Sports Direct International Plc. has been one of the outstanding financial successes in UK high street retail over the last 10 years. The sports apparel and equipment retailer has grown rapidly, hastening the demise of former market leader JJB Sports into bankruptcy in 2012, and entering the FTSE 100 in September 2013. The business is often considered to be unconventional, principally due to its bold retailing strategy and the role of founder and controlling shareholder Mike Ashley. Nevertheless, its unprecedented growth to become the market leader in UK sports retail signifies a notable achievement, in a changing retail environment where online pure plays such ASOS Plc. threaten conventional high street retailers.
The retail strategy seen in Sports Direct stores has differentiated the business compared to other high street retailers in the mind of consumers; by having a strong discounting focus and offering a wide range of sports apparel and equipment.
The business has diversified from UK based store retail and significantly grown its online and international operations, expanding across France, Belgium, Poland and the Czech Republic.
For a full analysis of the retail strategy of Sports Direct International read our exclusive case study here.