Pursuing its international expansion, JD Sports Fashion has signed an agreement to acquire a 60 percent stake in the Marketing Investment Group (MIG), a wholesaler and multi-channel retailer with a network of 410 retail stores in Poland and eight other neighboring countries. The deal is due to be closed before the end of May, subject to approval by Poland’s anti-trust authorities and other customary conditions.
Without providing information on the terms of the takeover, a JD executive indicates that the investment is not going to be big for this company, which generated revenues equivalent to about £200 million (€230m-$280m) in the year ended on Jan. 31, 2020.
He also said that MIG’s stores are too small to be converted to the JD Sports format, but JD plans to use MIG’s platform to help establish its own operations in the region “in due course,” if the deal goes through.
MIG’s retail business consists mainly of two chains of sporting goods stores, Sizeer and 50 Style. It also manages 17 Timberland stores and nine Umbro stores in Poland, along with a recently formed network of 18 elegant shoe shops operating under the Symbiosis banner.
The majority of MIG’s shares are owned by two brothers, Andrzej and Zbigniew Grząka. JD has agreed to put and call options to enable future exit opportunities for MIG’s sellers, with whom it will work in partnership. Peter Cowgill, executive chairman of JD, says the combination of MIG’s “highly experienced and knowledgeable management team” with “the expertise of the JD leadership team will provide the group with strong foundations from which to successfully optimise the opportunities in the region.”