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Wilko to open 100 new stores over next five years

Wilko has unveiled plans to open 100 new stores in the next five years as it posted flat full year profits.

As many retailers are trying to close stores, the variety store retailer, which rebranded from Wilkinson earlier this year, said it will open shops in a “diverse range of locations” to cater for customers’ changing shopping habits.

Wilko said it wants to create “inviting, convenient and fun stores which provide a great shopping experience and a great range of quality products, good enough to drive footfall to our high streets and other shopping destinations”.

The retailer’s pre-tax profits were broadly flat at £27.6m in the year to January 31 against £27.5m last year.

Sales dipped 4.4% to £1.46bn.

During the year it rebranded all its 375 stores to Wilko and relaunched its website under

This month it emerged that director Karin Swann, a member of the founding family, had left the board and sold her 50% stake in the business to the other side of the family, led by Lisa Wilkinson, who is now sole chairman.

In a joint statement, written at the end of the financial year, Swann and Wilkinson said: “We had a busy year. Our customers are a savvy bunch and know what they want, where they’re prepared to go for it and how much they are willing to pay.

“We know we need to remain relevant, deliver on quality and trend and offer great value to keep them shopping with us. So, we continue to work on our brand, in-store environment, product ranges, quality and online proposition. We’re continuing on our journey at pace and, with a slowly improving economy, we’re ready with renewed optimism and some big plans.”

Source : Tiffany Holland - Retail Week

21 August 2014

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