Wilko is undertaking a complete review of its store portfolio and has announced proposals to close up to 15 stores before January 2023 as leases end and where “favourable” terms cannot be agreed.
It said this does not impact the retailer’s new store or store relocation programme which will continue as planned and will allow Wilko to ensure future investments are only made in “great” locations with suitable terms.
According to Wilko, the business has many ‘legacy’ locations and has identified some outdated lease agreements. With landlord relationships changing it said “now is the time to prepare strong foundations and open negotiations with all landlords to enable wilko to restructure the portfolio”.
The 15 stores on the consideration list for closure are: Shipley, Bournemouth, Stockton, The Fort, Scunthorpe, Narborough Road, Grantham, Redditch, Rotherham, Skegness, Sutton Coldfield, Edmonton Green, Llanelli, Merthyr Tydfil and Cleethorpes.
Jerome Saint-Marc, Wilko CEO, said: “Our history is steeped in serving our customers and communities going back to 1930 but there’s no denying the way people shop with us and where they want to shop with us is changing.
“As a business we’re evolving and this includes working with landlords for more favourable terms, as well as looking at locations and store formats. We’ll continue to pull together to make our business better to secure the future of over 16,000 team members.”
He added: “We’ll be doing everything we can to support our affected team members who will be offered any available positions in nearby stores. We apologise to those communities where stores are closing but will continue to offer them everything they need in nearby stores or via wilko.com.”