Pepco Group, the fast-growing variety discount retailer which owns the Pepco and Dealz brands in Europe and Poundland in the UK, today announces that it has agreed with PwC – the administrators of Wilkinson Hardware Stores Ltd, the UK discount retailer – to take control of up to 71 Wilko store leases.
Lease assignments are expected to be completed in early Autumn, enabling these stores to join Poundland’s existing 800-plus UK estate and trade through the important fourth calendar quarter of 2023.
Poundland intends to move these stores over to its brand as soon as practical.
Pepco Group’s focus is to build a bigger, better, cheaper and simpler business. This includes moving to a common, global sourcing platform through leveraging the Group’s fully integrated end-to-end sourcing entity, PGS – which is a key competitive advantage. This autumn will see Poundland stores stock Pepco clothing sourced by PGS, which will also supply all own-brand general merchandise and FMCG across the Group from next year.
Andy Bond, Executive Chairman of Pepco Group, said: “The agreement to take control of a number of Wilko store leases will help to bring Poundland’s fantastic prices and offer to even more customers in the UK. It will be pleasing to offer employment to a number of Wilko’s colleagues – who will benefit from being part of a successful and fast-growing pan-European variety discount group.
“Pepco Group is well placed for future success across Europe, supported by its market-leading customer proposition, strong balance sheet and impressive cash flow. The Group’s strategy to become a bigger, better, cheaper and simpler business will enable it to continue to providing families on a budget with great range, value and convenience for many years to come.”
In June, the Group completed a successful debt refinancing with its inaugural bond issue of €375 million, which saw strong demand from international and Polish investors and was multiple times oversubscribed. Following the successful pricing of its bond, Pepco received supportive ratings from three major credit agencies, Fitch, S&P and Moody’s, which noted the robustness of the business and a healthy organic growth profile.
Pepco Group will issue its Q4 FY23 trading update on 12 October 2023