Another 10 former Wilko stores will open under the Poundland brand this weekend, after Poundland confirmed it will take on the leases of up to 71 Wilko shops, promising to prioritise former Wilko workers for new jobs at these sites.
As of today (October 6), more than 200 job offers have been made to people who previously worked at Wilko. 20 Wilko stores will have opened under the Poundland brand after this weekend’s makeover.
The stores opening will stock grocery, household, and general merchandise ranges, as well as Pepco clothing. Poundland, which has more than 800 stores in the UK, intends to carry out a full makeover of these shops in 2024.
Poundland managing director Austin Cooke said: “Our people make Poundland special and last week they did an amazing job to turn ex-Wilko stores into brand new Poundlands in just six days — the size and scale of what they’ve achieved has been nothing short of phenomenal.
“But they worked hard because we meant what we said about moving quickly to create jobs for Wilko colleagues.
“And that’s why we’ll pull out all the stops to repeat that feat and open another 10 stores this weekend.
“I know, from meeting our new colleagues from Wilko, how delighted they were to welcome customers old and new back to their store last weekend — and that’s inspiring us to keep the pace up and bring the amazing value we promise to more high streets this Saturday.”
All remaining Wilko stores will close on October 8.
The Wilko job cuts included staff working in HR, IT, finance, legal, and distribution, when bids to save the entire business collapsed.
Why is Wilko closing stores?
The firm was unable to secure emergency funding to save its 400 stores throughout the UK.
Wilko has struggled in the economic climate and last year borrowed £40 million to stay afloat, changed its leadership team, and sold a distribution centre.
It also struggled to pay suppliers and this led to shoppers noticing gaps appearing on its shelves.
Last year, the owners of the brand took £3 million in dividends despite the business falling almost £37 million into the red before the injection of £40 million.
Wilko is continuing to trade while in administration but overall control is with the administrator rather than the former management.
However, it is understood most Wilko shops have now closed for good.
When is Wilko closing down?
All 400 Wilko stores are expected to be shut by October 8, 2023.
Poundland stores opening on October 7
33-35 Nottingham Street, Melton Mowbray, LE13 1NN
Units 2/4 Bank Road, Matlock, DE4 3AQ
24 Welsh Street, Chepstow, NP16 5LL
The Kimberley Shopping Centre, 25 Greens Lane, Nottingham, NG16 2PB
15-21 High Street, Worcester, WR1 2QE
Unit 6-18 Civic Way, Marina Walk, Ellesmere Port, CH65 0AP
Cary Lane, Brigg, DN20 8EY
13-15 Fore Street, Redruth, TR15 2BD
Units 1-2, 92-94 Victoria Road, Ferndown, BH22 9JA
Unit 2/3, Crane Street, Torfaen, Pontypool, South Wales, NP4 6LY
How many Wilko stores are in London?
There are at least 26 Wilko shops in London. These are:
Kensington High Street