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John David Group (JD.)

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Wednesday 15 January, 2003

John David Group

Trading Statement

John David Group (The) PLC
15 January 2003

15th January 2003

                            THE JOHN DAVID GROUP PLC
                            CHRISTMAS TRADING UPDATE

The John David Group Plc ('the Group'), a leading specialist retailer of
fashionable branded sports and leisure wear, today provides details of its
Christmas trading for the six week period ended 11th January 2003.

Christmas Trading Review

In early December 2002 we reported our interim results and highlighted the
importance of the key Christmas and January sales periods to our overall
performance. In common with many other retailers, pre Christmas trading was
slower than expected followed by improved sales in the post Christmas sales
period. As a consequence, the six weeks to 11th January 2003 produced a like for
like sales performance of -1.36% in the JD Sports Division and -2.03% in the
First Sport Division. Total sales increased by 11.36% in JD Sports Division and
decreased by 3.21% in First Sport Division, during the same period; First
Sport's total performance being influenced by a small number of store closures
in comparison with the previous year.

Stocks now continue to be in line with plan although the overall gross profit
margin generated during this key trading period has been at a lower level than
would normally be anticipated. As a consequence, we expect that our profits will
be below current market expectations for the period to 31st January 2003. Our
final results are expected in April 2003.

John Wardle, Chairman, said: 'I am disappointed with our trading performance
during the key Christmas period and our overall reduced gross profit margin. I
remain cautiously optimistic, however, that trading will improve in the new
financial year following the integration of the First Sport Division and
particularly as we are now in full control of the total buy in this division
from Spring 2003. Stocks continue to remain in line with plan and are expected
to resume to normal trading and margin performance during February 2003. The
past year has been a demanding one, having absorbed a significant division into
our operation - almost doubling the size of the Group - and I remain confident
that this division will enhance our earnings in future periods. I therefore also
continue to remain confident in our strategy, future success and long term
profitability of the Group.'

Enquiries to:

The John David Group Plc                                01706 628000
Barry Bown (Chief Executive)
Malcolm Blackhurst (Finance Director)

Hogarth Partnership Limited                             020 7357 9477
Andrew Jaques
Tom Leatherbarrow

                      This information is provided by RNS
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