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Shoppers all set to cash in as ‘pound wars’ break out
BARGAIN bazaar Poundland is opening its doors in Templar’s Shopping Park this Saturday – 500m away from rival 99p Stores in Templar’s Square shopping centre.
It sets the scene for a battle for the hearts and wallets of frugal shoppers in the south and east of the city.
But Lookose Joseph, manager of 99p Stores in Templars Square, is confident his customers will stay loyal.
He said: “They will go away for a few weeks but then they will be back. We have a wider range of products, we have got a lot of customers, and they won’t go elsewhere.”
Mr Joseph, who lives in Witney, said that in the past year his store had seen a 25 per cent increase in business.
He said: “It is because it is cheaper and we are always looking for new products and brands and people are interested to come back.”
In May this year, some of the UK’s Poundland shops near 99p Stores were whittling their prices down to 97p to undercut their competitor.
But Poundland has said it will be towing the brand line in Cowley and selling everything for £1.
Damian Lea, 33, from Iffley Road, has three children with his partner Natalia, said: “It is about time we had a Poundland here. It is cheap, and our children love it for art and school stuff. It’s also good for cleaning stuff like mops – the essentials.”
He added: “Poundland is better than 99p Stores. They have more brands.”
Carol Thorpe, from Appleton, said that the £1 stores only gave people the illusion of bagging a bargain.
Mrs Thorpe, 43, said: “I wouldn’t shop there because I don’t like the concept. They will make things specially for stores like these which are different sizes and weights. You will have crisps which are cheaper but if you compare them with Sainsbury’s or Tesco, they weigh less anyway.”
Poundland calls itself “Europe’s biggest single price discount retailer” and has 450 stores in the UK.
The 99p Stores chain has more than 200 outlets in the UK.
Poundland boasts that it offers the biggest well-known brands like Cadbury’s, Heinz and Coca-Cola.
Poundland trading director Richard Lancaster said the firm was “delighted to bring our unique proposition to Cowley”.
He said: “Poundland offers amazing value on top branded products to over 4.5 million customers every week.
“The £1 price hasn’t changed since we opened our first store 22 years ago.”
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