Groupe Go Sport continued to suffer sales declines in France in the first quarter of 2014, but its stores in Poland performed well and its international franchising program progressed during the period, adding three new Go Sport stores in Jordan, Egypt and Abu Dhabi and the first one in Oman.
In France, the group reported declines on a same-store basis of 8.8 percent for its Go Sport chain and 0.8 percent for Courir, its chain of athletic footwear stores, which had been previously scoring steady sales increases. The group blamed a stock clearance program at Courir and a drop in sales of seasonal products due to a warm winter at Go Sport. Excluding winter sports items, which tend to represent one-third of revenues at this time of the year, sales were nearly flat for the quarter, and they tended to improve from one month to the next.
The Go Sport stores in Poland recorded a sales increase of 2.6 percent on a comparable basis, in spite of the lack of snow, thanks to a number of initiatives that stimulated higher conversion rates among the public. The running and cycling categories performed particularly well.
In absolute terms, the group's sales fell by 6.8 percent to €155.2 million in the quarter, with a decline of 9.5 percent to €101.2 million for Go Sport in France and a drop of 1.9 percent for Courir to €39.4 million. Go Sport Poland grew by 3.0 percent to €12.7 million.
The group closed one Go Sport store and one Courir store in France during the period. It ended up with 336 stores on March 31, including 179 Go Sport stores and 157 Courir stores.