GHM! employee

A new mixed retail discounter, GHM! (Guess How Much!) will launch a chain of stores this summer that will dedicate a third of its space to ambient groceries.

Leeds headquartered GHM! is looking for sites “from Kent through to Yorkshire” with an initial wave of eight to 10 pilot stores of between 8,000 sq ft and 10,000 sq ft, the first of which is set to open at The Crescent retail and leisure development in Hinckley, Leicestershire, in June.

GHM! is the second retail format from Pepkor UK, the investment vehicle established by former Asda chief executive Andy Bond.

It will be run independently from Pep&Co, a family fashion retailer that was Pepkor UK’s first venture, which completed its 50-location opening programme in September.

Koray Gul, who has held several senior trading leadership roles at Asda over the past three years, will be managing director of the new format.

Other directors include Simon Singleton, operations director, who has held senior roles at Holland & Barrett, Woolworths, Focus DIY and Asda; Daniel Donnelly, sourcing director, who has worked at Poundworld; Chris Burns, trading director, formerly of Wilkinson, Asda and Tesco; and Roy Ellis, finance director, who was most recently finance director at Poundstretcher.

“The discount sector continues to grow much more strongly than traditional retail in the UK because it’s redefining value for customers. UK customers will continue to value new options that save them money,” said Bond.

The stores will stock everything from children’s and adult clothing essentials to household staples and “the favourite grocery brands that families can’t live without” according to the company.

“We want to be the ultimate one-stop shop for mums to refill every cupboard, drawer, larder and wardrobe in her home and save money,” the company said.

Typical 10,000 sq ft stores will carry about 6,000 items but GHM! Will offer an edited range of “the most-often bought products, with truly goundbreaking price leadership on hundreds of branded essentials most familiar with mums on a tight budget”.

It said that unlike bigger retailers built for efficiency, not for speed, its smaller set-up meant it could be “actively traded, agile and responsive”, allowing it to flex its ranges quickly to suit families’ needs - and be more aggressive on price.

The retailer will not be offering fresh, chilled or frozen food and it said the ambient products stocked would be the sort of products shoppers bought in volume.