Ireland's Henderson family agrees purchase of 50 Poundworld stores

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LONDON (Reuters) - Ireland’s Henderson family said on Thursday it had agreed to buy around 50 Poundworld stores, having struck a deal with the administrator of the collapsed British discount retailer.

The 335-store Poundworld went into administration in June after its majority owner, the private equity group TPG Capital, failed to find a buyer for the struggling business which had a total workforce of about 5,100.

Administrator Deloitte said last month that all Poundworld stores would close by the middle of August.

David Henderson said in a statement his family’s offer to purchase “the best and remaining stores” had been accepted by Deloitte. He did not disclose how much the family would pay.

“There’s an agreement in principle but it’s not confirmed,” said a source close to Deloitte.

A string of British store groups have either gone out of business or announced plans to close shops this year as they struggle with subdued consumer spending, rising labour costs, higher business property taxes and growing online competition.

The near demise of Poundworld, based near Wakefield in northern England, follows the collapse this year of Toys R Us UK, electricals group Maplin and drinks wholesaler Conviviality.

Reporting by James Davey and Padraic Halpin; Editing by Kirsten Donovan