5000 jobs at risk as Poundworld enters administration

barnstapleUK-based retail chain Poundworld has officially entered administration after its private equity owner failed twice to secure a buyer willing to purchase the struggling business.

The discount retailer will continue to trade until a buyer is found, leaving the fate of over 5000 employees up in the air.

It has been revealed that a round of rescue discussions has fallen through with R Capital, as TPG Capital, Poundworld’s owners, hoped to sell it as a solvent business.

The company reported an operating loss for the first time in its history, £6.2 million ($10.9 million), for the year ending 31 March 2017.

“The retail trading environment in the UK remains extremely challenging and Poundworld has been seeking to address this through a restructure of its business,” said Clare Boardman, joint administrator at Deloitte, “Unfortunately, this has not been possible.

“We still believe a buyer can be found for the business or at least part of it and we are keeping staff appraised of developments as they happen”.

Financial difficulties faced by the retailer were also impacted by high product cost inflation, decreasing footfall, weaker consumer confidence and an increasingly competitive discount retail market.

“Poundworld has faced several headwinds,” said Emily Stella, Lead Analyst and GlobalData, “difficulty absorbing inflation, a mature store portfolio with little room for further expansion, and fierce competition.

“Poundworld is not the only discounter with problems; insurers withdrew credit from The Original Factory Shop this month after falling profits and close a large portion of its store estate, and Poundstretcher announced a fall of 7.5% in its full-year sales to March 2017.”

The company was formed in 2004 and were named in the Sunday Times’ ‘Top Track 250’ in both 2014 and 2016.


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