Poundland Worthing

Source: The Grocer

Poundland owner Pepco Group has appointed Stephan Borchert as its new CEO, as Andy Bond prepares to switch from executive chair to a non-executive chair role.

Borchert served as CEO of GrandVision, owner of the Vision Express and Apollo-Optik chains in Europe, from 2018 to 2022. Before that he was president of Sephora EMEA on the global executive committee. He will begin a three-month induction period at Pepco Group on 1 July.

Bond stepped down as Pepco Group CEO in 2022 over health reasons, before rejoining the board as chairman later the same year, following a full recovery.

Bond will remain executive chair during Borchert’s induction and take the role of non-executive chair on 1 October.

“On behalf of the Board, it is great to welcome Stephan, who brings a wealth of experience and a results-driven track record in retail and international business operations,” said Bond.

“I look forward to working with Stephan to deliver our renewed strategy to improve profitability and cash generation in our core established business, while delivering more measured profitable growth.”

Read more: Jollyes appoints Andy Bond as chairman as Asda co-owner TDR Capital takes majority stake

Borchert said: “I’m honoured to be the next chief executive of Pepco Group, which has the opportunity to become Europe’s leading variety discount retailer.

“Pepco Group is a powerhouse retail business with a strong reputation for delivering incredible range, value and convenience for customers. I am delighted to work alongside the leadership team to deliver on the Group’s strategic priorities as Pepco Group enters the next phase of its growth journey.”

The announcement came alongside a trading update, reporting second quarter group revenue growth of 11.7% on a constant currency basis to €1.3bn, and like-for-like growth of 2.9%.

For Poundland, revenue in the quarter to 31 March was up 4.5% to €458m, while like for like sales were up by 2.8%.

In the first half, revenues for Poundland were up 3.7% to €1.1bn and like for likes were up by 0.7%. 

The group said Poundland had seen an impact in the first half from a substantial customer offer change in clothing and general merchandise to Pepco ranges sourced at group level. It said the transition was now largely over and Poundland should start to see a progressive improvement in performance over the coming months.

Poundland benefited from 81 gross new store openings during the period, largely reflecting 56 Wilko conversions.

Bond said: “The group is confident about delivering profitable growth this financial year – reflecting a stronger and more resilient business – as we continue to move forward to build Europe’s leading variety discount retailer.”