In response to our inquiry, a spokesman for JD Sports Fashion denied a report in The Sunday Times that Peter Cowgill, the company’s dynamic executive chairman and CEO, was planning to step down from its day-to-day functions, hiring a CEO to help manage the group’s growing range of operations. He flashed out the following statement by Cowgill: “Whilst I am always seeking to increase the depth of our management team in order to align with the expansive development of the business, the Board is not presently engaged in recruiting a Chief Executive Officer to support our future plans.” He noted that a Capital Markets Day due to be held in October “will serve once more to demonstrate the ‘bench strength’ of JD and the breadth of its leadership.” Cowgill, who is now 68 years old, became executive chairman 17 years ago, when JD was much smaller and less profitable than it is now. He had started as chief financial officer around the time when JD went public in 1996, but left four years later before taking over its helm in 2004. Cowgill is also a minority shareholder of the company, which is still controlled by the Pentland Group.