Poundland‘s Retail Director talks strategy

Poundland Retail Director Tim McDonnell today welcomed the retailer‘s strong results as it continues to maintain focus on its customer offerings.

Earlier today, the discount retailer reported a 21.6 per cent sales rise for the 52 weeks to April 1st 2012, while underlying EBITDA rose 26.5 per cent to £40.1 million.

So far this year, the company has opened 22 new stores in the UK and Republic of Ireland, and in April, the opening of its store in Haringey London helped the retailer reach a milestone with its 400th outlet.

McDonnell noted that the retailer‘s acquisition of eight Peacocks stores across the UK has helped bolster sales.

He told Retail Gazette: “The Peacocks stores we have acquired thus far are trading very, very well.

“Haringey, as mentioned in results, is doing well and that is a former Peacocks store. We have researched this and found that we can have 1,000 sites in addition to what we have received.

“We are still negotiating with Peacocks so we hopefully still have more to come in the coming months.”

As the company continues expansion plans, McDonnell noted the strong performance of the retailer‘s Dealz offering as a further nine stores opened under the fascia in the Republic of Ireland over the financial year.

“The Irish economy has been tested like UK and of course we did research before we entered the market there.

“A primary concern was how we would do this and how we‘d manage the Euro. Truly, the Irish have received us with open arms for which we are very grateful.

“Our stores and our value proposition is very different from other retailers in the region so I‘m happy to say we‘re doing really well.”

As a discount retailer, Poundland aims to offer a speedy and seamless point of purchase for its bargain-hungry customers and McDonnell feels that concentrating on reducing queue times is essential to offering a positive customer experience.

“A key part of our strategy is also reducing time spent at the till for the customer.Our IT Director is always looking at transaction times and ways to reduce how long a customer is waiting for.”

Earlier this year, the retailer began offering shoppers the option of paying via American Express cards in the hopes of enticing more middle-class customers and boosting sales.

“All stores registered good sales following the introduction of American Express and customers were happy with their transaction,” explained McDonnell.

“This is a big success for us as it is a core part of our strategy to use new mediums and speed up the process for customers in stores.”


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