Value retail chain 99p Stores has today opened its initial shop in the Republic of Ireland under the €uro 50 fascia, as it ventures outside of the UK for the first time.
Having arrived in Dublin this morning, the company plans to open in Balbriggan later this month and then in a further 20 locations across the Emerald Isle over the next year, with all products within the stores on sale for €1.50 or less.
The expansion of 99p Stores to Ireland comes after the retailer capitalised on the recent demise of high street mainstays such as Woolworths by doubling its UK store portfolio in the 12 months following the collapse of the general merchandise specialist.
Its Irish launch also follows the decision by value retail rival Poundland to open up stores across the Irish Sea, which will see four outlets under the Dealz fascia unveiled between October and December this year.
Barclays Corporate announced today that 99p Stores, which also owns the Family Bargains brand, will use the financial services provider for all of its operational banking in order to support its growth both in the UK and Ireland.
By extending banking facilities of over £20 million, Barclays will enable the retailer to double the size of its business in the coming years, supporting the opening of between 40 and 50 stores each year.
Glen McDonald, Relationship Director in Barclays Corporate’s Retail and Wholesale team, said: “99p Stores and Family Bargains is a fantastic success story in what is a very challenging environment for retailers.
“The management’s ambitious growth plans to double the business’ size and expand overseas are testament to their success, and will ultimately create many new and much-needed jobs.”
Poundland and 99p Stores have opted to enter the Irish market at what is a difficult period for the country’s economy, coming soon after EU countries were forced to bail out the nation’s economy which was on the brink of defaulting.
According to the Central Statistics Agency, Ireland’s unemployment rate rose to 14.4 per cent in August, marking the fourth consecutive monthly increase in the number of people without a job in the country.
The UK-based retailers’ value offering is expected to be welcomed by the hard-up Irish consumer market.