When it comes to looking for growth stocks, I tend to take a cautious approach. Growth stocks can be risky propositions and may be more volatile than established enterprises. However, one company in the FTSE 100 appears to me to offer all the attractive characteristics of a high-quality growth play without many of the usual risks.
Global retail champion
The company I am talking about is JD Sports Fashion (LSE: JD). This enterprise has defied all expectations over the past few years.
Management has pursued a double-edged strategy. As well as focusing on organic growth, by offering consumers something they can’t find elsewhere at an attractive price, the company has also pursued acquisitions.
JD has completed a string of deals and joint ventures. These have helped the group expand its footprint and viability, both with consumers and suppliers.
In its latest deal, the group has acquired 80% of Greek sports retailer Cosmos Sport SA. Cosmos operates 57 stores in Greece and three in Cyprus. Revenues totalled €52m for the year to the end of December 2020.
This deal is not particularly big in the grand scheme of things. For the 26 weeks to the end of July, JD’s revenues amounted to just under £3.9bn. Nevertheless, I think it is an excellent example of the buy-and-build strategy management is pursuing.
As well as these acquisitions, during the first half of its financial year, JD opened 21 new stores across Western Europe. It also opened a further six in the Asia Pacific region.
The group also started a major programme to enhance its logistics network in the first half to ensure the company’s infrastructure is up-to-scratch. Two long-term leases have been signed on major fulfilment facilities as part of this initiative.
FTSE 100 growth star
All in all, it looks to me as if JD is not resting on its laurels. Despite its explosive growth over the past decade, the company is not slowing down. It is investing heavily in its store network, marketing, acquisitions and infrastructure to meet rising demand.
These are the reasons why I think this is one of the best FTSE 100 growth stocks to buy today and would add the shares to my portfolio.
Having said all of the above, there are a couple of risks to the group’s growth that I will be keeping an eye on. These include rising cost inflation, which could impact profit margins and supply challenges.
Further, the fashion retail industry is highly competitive. Countless companies have tried to take over the global retail market and have failed for one reason or another. JD is not immune to the challenges these firms faced.
As such, there is always going to be a risk the company’s fortunes could change. This is why I will be keeping a close eye on the business’s prospects.
Rupert Hargreaves has no position in any of the shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.