Athletic apparel and footwear retailer John David Group has posted a pre-tax profit of £6 million for fiscal 2003, compared with £15.1m in the 10 months to January 2003.

The Lancashire-based company, which operates the JD Sports chain, also posted a rise in total sales to £458.1m for the year, up from £370.8m in the comparable year-on-year period.

According to executive chairman Peter Cowgill, 2003 had been a "very difficult" year for John David.

He warned that all strategic operations within the company were "under review" as a result of the downturn.

For the 13 weeks to May 1, the company's same-store sales rose 0.9 per cent.