Shop.Poundland.co.uk launched as a pilot in selected postcodes last year

Poundland is to offer home delivery nationwide after acquiring Poundshop.com – the online business created by the entrepreneur who also founded Poundland.

Steve Smith opened the first Poundland store in 1990 and sold the chain 10 years later for £50m. In 2014, he founded Poundshop.com, now claimed to be the UK’s largest online-only discounter, with about 400,000 customers across the country.

Poundland plans to integrate Poundshop.com with its own online service, Shop.Poundland.co.uk, which launched as a pilot last year in selected postcodes in Birmingham and Walsall and has since extended across the Midlands and into South Yorkshire.

The integration will see Shop.Poundland.co.uk’s offer extended nationwide using Poundshop.com’s online fulfilment centre in Wednesbury, West Midlands, along with Poundland’s own in Cannock, Staffordshire.

Ahead of that integration, in the “immediate term” Poundshop.com is to continue trading under its own brand while benefiting from Poundland’s online range, offering it for delivery nationwide.

“That will happen very quickly,” said a Poundland spokesman.

Smith and Poundshop.com CEO Chris Maddox are to act in an advisory capacity in the integration, which will be led by Poundland retail and transformation director Austin Cooke. Sixty-five Poundshop.com distribution centre and head office staff are to be kept on under the new owners.

As well as extending geographical reach across the UK, the move would also see Poundland expand its online range, adding more food and drink as well as Pep&Co clothing and homewares, the spokesman said.

Both Shop.Poundland.co.uk and Poundshop.com already offer ambient food ranges across a number of categories. Both also sell at multiple price points.

Poundland’s spokesman said the deal was the “next step” needed for the business to accelerate its online rollout. He compared it to Poundland’s 2019 acquisition of Fultons Foods, which allowed it to much more quickly roll out frozen and chilled food to hundreds of stores.

“We’re pleased about the geographic online trial,” he said. “Knowing we can do it profitably, you either find the capability [to roll it out] yourself or buy it from somewhere else. It’s quicker if you buy it from somewhere else. That’s where we are.”

Poundland MD Barry Williams said: “It’s great to warmly welcome the Poundshop.com team to Poundland. This acquisition puts power and pace behind our aspirations to make our amazing products and value available to customers across the UK and Ireland, however they choose to shop.”