LONDON, July 2 (Reuters) - Poundland, Europe's biggest single price value retailer, bucked the
economic downturn, posting underlying year earnings up over a quarter and enabling the group to pledge up to 2,000 new jobs and a strong performance in 2012.
Britons are generally holding back spending in the face of inflation, meagre wage increases and government austerity measures designed to cut record national debt.
But Warburg Pincus owned Poundland, which trades from 400 stores in the UK and Ireland, said its turnover rose 22 percent to 780 million pounds ($1.22 billion) in the year to April 1, as its offer of over 3,000 products and over 1,000 branded goods, all at a single price point of 1 pound, chimed with cash-strapped consumers.
Underlying earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation rose 27 percent to 40.1 million pounds.
'Notwithstanding the challenges of the economy and the competitive environment, Poundland is expected to perform robustly in the coming year,' the firm said, adding it plans to open at least 60 new stores and a new distribution centre in 2012-13, creating up to 2,000 new jobs. ($1 = 0.6376 British pounds)
(Reporting by James Davey) Keywords: BRITAIN POUNDLAND/
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