JD Sports Calls UK Watchdog’s Decision “Absurd”

JD Sports Fashion has criticized the UK’s competition watchdog for paving the way for potential job losses after the retailer was blocked from merging with a struggling rival, Footasylum.

Peter Cowgill, the executive chairman of the UK’s largest sports retailer, said the company “fundamentally disagreed” with the Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) decision, which was “absurd” in the light of the high street’s struggles.

JD, which owns a string of sports and outdoor-wear chains including Blacks, Go Outdoors, Millets, and Spain’s Sprinter, as well as JD Sports, stated it was considering whether to appeal against the ruling, which will require it to sell off Footasylum just over a year after acquiring the chain for £90 million (US$111.68 million).

JD stated Footasylum may have disappeared from the high street without its financial backing, and any new owner would probably cut jobs at the struggling chain.

Cowgill said, “We fundamentally disagree with the CMA’s decision, which continues to rely on an inaccurate and outdated analysis of the UK sports retail competitive landscape, and is underpinned by outdated and flawed customer surveys.”

Full Content: The Guardian

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