Poundland has nearly doubled its profits over the past year, boosted by the opening of 41 new stores.

Operating profits were up 47% to £11.8m in the year ending March 2009, while like-for-like sales were up 2.1%.

“Consumers are having a tough time at the moment," said chief executive Jim McCarthy. "Having a single price strategy is a big benefit, as it means they can budget easily as they shop."

Poundland aimed to increase the number of stores from 212 to 250 by the end of the year, he added.