JD Sports snaps up US trainer retailer Shoe Palace in £243 million deal

Sportswear giant JD Sports has snapped up US trainer retailer Shoe Palace for 325 million dollars (£243.8 million).

The move is the Bury-based retailer’s latest expansion into the US and it said the deal “complements” the Finish Line shoe-store chain it bought in 2018.

JD said the deal would help to grow its footprint across the US west coast and increase its appeal among Hispanic and Latino shoppers, who form a significant proportion of Shoe Palace’s sales.

Shoe Palace was launched in 1993 by the Mersho family and currently has 167 stores, the vast majority of which trade under the Shoe Palace banner.

More than half of the stores are located in California, although the chain also has sites in Texas, Nevada, Arizona, Florida, Colorado, New Mexico and Hawaii.

In the year to December 31 2019, Shoe Palace generated revenues of 435 million dollars (£326.7 million) and posted a pre-tax profit of 52 million dollars (£39 million).

JD Sports’ expansion strategy also saw the group agree a £90 million deal to buy UK rival Footaslyum early last year.

The move was blocked by the UK competition watchdog but was granted a reprieve last month after the Competition Appeals Tribunal reversed the Competition and Market Authority (CMA) block.

Peter Cowgill, executive chairman of JD Sports Fashion, said: “We are delighted to have completed the acquisition of Shoe Palace.

“The Shoe Palace team are ambitious, have great energy and pride themselves on their consumer connection and we welcome them to the group.

“We are confident that our combined fascias will provide us with the flexibility and expertise to fulfil our mutual ambition of becoming a prime customer destination for sneakers and lifestyle apparel in the United States.”

George Mersho, chief executive officer of Shoe Palace, said: “We could not imagine a better way to continue to build on the legacy of our family business.

“Through this combination with JD and Finish Line in the US, we have gained a strong global partner.

“We look forward to being part of the JD family and continuing to serve our customers and communities for many years to come.”