Mega deal in the sportswear industry – JD Sports acquires Cosmos Sport

Cosmos Sport was founded in 1982 by Mr. Frangiskos Tsiknakis in Heraklion, Crete and since then has grown into a leading company in the field of retail sale of sports goods in Greece

British firm JD Sports, one of the strongest companies in the sporting goods sector globally, acquired 80% of the Greek sportswear chain Cosmos Sport, in which the EOS Capital Partners fund of Apostolos Tamvakakis had recently invested.

According to the announcement, the company EOS Capital Partners, exclusive manager of the EOS Hellenic Renaissance Fund (“Fund”) on Thursday, October 21, 2021 signed a binding agreement for the sale of the entire minority stake (30 %) held by Cosmos Sport SA , a leading company in the field of retail sale of sports goods in Greece and Cyprus.

JD Sports Fashion Plc, which is one of the largest companies in the world in the field, will acquire 80% of the share capital of Cosmos Sport, while the members of the Tsiknaki family, who are the founders and the main shareholders of the company until today, will remain in it maintaining a minority stake of 20%.

JD Sports’ turnover in the last financial year (February 1, 2020 – January 31, 2021) amounted to 6.16 billion pounds. The company, which is listed on the London Stock Exchange, has 3,304 stores worldwide.

What is Cosmos Sport?

Cosmos Sport was founded in 1982 by Mr. Frangiskos Tsiknakis in Heraklion, Crete and since then has grown into a leading company in the field of sports retail sales in Greece.

The subsequent strong chain of sportswear started from 1 store in the Hersonissos of Crete and currently operates 61 stores in Greece and Cyprus under 4 omnichannel retail brands (Cosmos Sport, Sneaker10, Slamdunk, Sportsfactory) marking a significant development course in recent years.

EOS invested in the company in December 2019, when the company had 43 points of sale – 39 physical stores and 4 e-shops.

EOS funds were used in order for the company to implement its development plan, which mainly included the expansion of the physical branch network and the further strengthening of its electronic platform. The contribution of EOS funds as well as its continuous support in matters of strategy played a catalytic role in order for the Company to successfully implement its investment plan (it now has 60 physical stores), to further strengthen the quality and positioning of its brand in the market, to significantly strengthen its logistics systems as well as to improve the “digital experience” of its customers following an omnichannel strategy.

In addition, the company expanded its activities abroad, establishing a new subsidiary in Cyprus where it already has 3 new stores and 1 e-shop. In the last two years, the company has achieved very strong financial performance, almost doubling its sales, which was accompanied by very strong operating profitability EBITDA that almost tripled for the same period.

Cosmos Sport sales for 2019 amounted to 47.5 million euros, of which approximately 40% was made through the e-shop. In 2020, its sales increased by 9% compared to 2019 to 51.8 million euros, with profits before taxes reaching 693,772 euros compared to profits of 2.25 million euros in the fiscal year 2019.

This year, sales are expected to exceed 81.5 million euros, of which 48% come from the online channel.

The success of the sports chain and the interest of the British

Mr. Apostolos Tamvakakis, founder and CEO of EOS Capital Partners said: “Almost two years ago we decided to invest in the company Cosmos Sport, in the field of retail and athleisure. We shared the same values, the same vision but also the important perspectives of the industry with the management team and the shareholders of the Company (the Tsiknakis family and Mr. N. Varvadoukas), investing in people, physical network, logistics, in the expansion abroad and of course in the Company’s electronic platform.

The results have been spectacular both in the development of networks and organic profitability and at the strategic and operational level, even in the difficult economic conditions of the pandemic. A key component of this success was mutual trust and respect between us. This success aroused the intense interest of one of the largest international retailers in the field, JD Sports.

I am convinced that Cosmos Sport will continue to stand out under its guidance of the Tsiknakis family and the vast experience of JD Sports, its new major shareholder. We thank the Tsiknakis family and JD Sports for the trust and the excellent cooperation “.

JD Sports Fashion Plc CEO Peter Cowgill said: “This is another exciting acquisition for JD that further expands our presence in Europe. We welcome to the group the very experienced and knowledgeable Tsiknakis family and we look forward to working with them for development opportunities in the area.”

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