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Poundworld collapse: 25 shops face closure with loss of 240 jobs

By Simon Penfold | Business | Published:

Administrators to collapsed discount retailer Poundworld are to close 25 stores, resulting in 242 job losses.

More than two dozen Poundworld shops face closure with the loss of more than 240 jobs

The list of closing stores had not been officially released but it understood that locally the shops at The Fort Retail Park in Birmingham and at Sutton Coldfield will shut.

Poundworld has nine stores across the Black Country and southern Staffordshire, as well as three in Birmingham.

Poundworld went bust last month and Deloitte, which is overseeing the process, has been attempting to secure a buyer for the business ever since.

But a memo to staff penned by the professional services firm, and seen by the Press Association, said: "As previously advised, the administrators have been preparing contingency plans in the event that we are not able to deliver a sale of the business as a whole.

"These plans have been continuing and it is with regret that the administrators have taken the decision to effect an organised wind down of 25 stores, starting today."

That last day of trading for the affected stores will be July 15.

Poundworld, which was formerly owned by private equity firm TPG Capital, has 335 stores and employs around 5,100 people.

It has two shops in Wolverhampton, in the Mander Centre and on Birmingham Road, as well as branches at the intu Merry Hill Shopping Centre, on the Reedswood Retail Park in Walsall, Bloxwich High Street, New Square in West Bromwich, the Queen's Retail Park in Stafford, Victoria Shopping Park in Hednesford and at the Three Spires in Lichfield.

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The news comes as hopes for a rescue of the beleaguered retailer fade.

Deloitte last week turned down a bid for Poundworld from its founder, Chris Edwards, who was looking to save a raft of stores and safeguard around 3,000 jobs.

However, on Monday it was revealed that the founder of rival Poundland, former Willenhall market trader turned retail entrepreneur Steve Smith, is in early-stage talks about a bid to salvage part of Poundworld out of administration.

Mr Smith, who sold Poundland with the father for £50m in 2002 and now lives at Romsley near Kidderminster, has not commented on the reports.

Daniel Butters and Clare Boardman at Deloitte have already made 100 people redundant at Poundworld's head office in Normanton, West Yorkshire.

Simon Penfold

By Simon Penfold
Business Editor - @SPenfold_star

Business Editor based at the Express & Star's head office in Wolverhampton, looking for stories big & small.

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