JD Sports has carried on camping with a £128.3m takeover of Go Outdoors, which cements its status as the largest outdoor equipment retailer in the UK.
JD Sports, already owns tent and hiking equipment retailers Blacks, Millets and Ultimate Outdoors, but will add the 58 Go Outdoors shops to its group.
There had been concerns last month that talks between Go Outdoors’ backer, private equity firm 3i, and JD Sports had hit a stumbling block amid the sterling slump which had caused tensions over pricing
However, sources said that JD Sports’ had still been committed to the deal as it is widely thought that consumer uncertainty following Brexit will fuel a rise in staycation holidays.
Earlier this year UK tourism boards reported record-breaking booking inquiries while the number of Brits holidaying in England in the first quarter of the year rose by 10pc on the year before to 7.3m , with the weaker pound making trips abroad more expensive.
“Consumers appear to be undeterred by what has been a politically tumultuous year,” said Rod Baxter of KPMG who advised on the deal. “Confidence for the moment remains resilient, supporting retailers’ prospects, and we would expect to see more buyout activity in the coming months.”
Sheffield-based Go Outdoors was founded in 1998 by Paul Caplan and John Graham following a management buyout backed by YFM Equity partners. Private equity firm 3i invested £28m in the company in 2011. Mr Clan and Mr Graham will leave following the sale to JD Sports and share a multi-million pound windfall.
Go Outdoor’s shops which are mainly on retail parks, generated £202m in sales last year, while JD Sports’s existing 182 outdoor shops made £155m during the same period.
“Go Outdoors is a great addition to our existing outdoor business,” said JD Sports chairman Peter Cowgill. “The minimal overlap in store locations and their out of town, one-stop retailer approach complements the work we have done on the high street with Blacks and Millets and further strengthens our offering in the outdoor sector.”
JD Sports shares rose by 11.5p, or 3.6pc, to 330.9p following the takeover announcement.