The Poundland stores will go into temporary hibernation due to lockdown measures, although the majority of the retailer’s branches will remain open.
Poundland has announced that it will place 44 of its stores into temporary hibernation with immediate effect. The retailer said that although it is classed as an essential retailer, it was replicating the measures it took during the lockdowns of 2020. The company added that the “vast majority” of its 800-plus stores would remain open. In the majority of locations where a branch was “hibernating”, there is another store that will remain open nearby.
The move is designed to protect the business in the short-term, to ensure it is well positioned once the UK emerges from the pandemic
“We learned valuable lessons during the lockdown in March about how buying patterns change as people stick to government advice to stay at home,” Poundland retail director Austin Cooke explained. “Putting a small number of stores into hibernation helps protect them for the long term and focus our attention on the majority of stores that remain open to serve their neighbourhoods.”
The closures reflect the 80% drop in footfall at some shopping centres and high streets as the various lockdown rules in place across the UK take effect. Poundland has confirmed that staff in hibernating stores will be placed on furlough to protect their jobs.
Austin Cooke added: “We hope this lockdown is short and we can re-open our hibernating stores as quickly as possible, and we remain grateful for the vital support schemes available to us that help protect jobs.”