Poundstretcher has finally been confirmed as the mystery buyer for Ugo Stores.
Following days of speculation, it emerged this morning that the discounter had bought 18 of the 20 Ugo stores placed into administration as part of a pre-pack deal, saving the jobs of all 300 staff employed by Ugo. Workers at the two stores not involved in the deal will be offered alternative roles with Poundstretcher.
Ugo, which The Grocer revealed last week had been experiencing serious supply issues after its main supplier stopped deliveries, was officially put into administration yesterday, but bought straight out by Poundstretcher.
The P&A Partnership, which has acted as administrator for a number of former businesses owned by Ugo boss Arthur Harris, including Haldanes Stores, said: “This was a particularly complex deal and we focused in our negotiations on transferring over the employees. We are pleased that we have been able to rescue the business and save so many jobs, particularly given the tough economic climate for the retail sector.”
Hemant Patel, finance director of Poundstretcher owner Crown Crest, added: “We are delighted with the acquisition of these 18 stores, which now takes Poundstretcher to 400 stores, and we are pleased to secure all 300 jobs. We plan to open further stores during 2012.”