Retailer Poundstretcher is to reward established employees with a 10% pay rise in recognition of their hard work throughout the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic.
From 1 January 2022, those who have been members of staff at the business for a full year will receive the hike in their basic annual salary.
This will take them above the increased national minimum wage that the UK government is implementing from April 2022.
Poundstretcher opened 47 stores across the UK over the last year, including in Derby, Erdington, Poole, Truro and Northern Ireland, and plans to open a further 50 stores in the next 12 months.
The budget retailer recorded sales of £140 million in the six months to the end of September in spite of external cost pressures. Last year it entered into a company voluntary arrangement (CVA), which allows it to pay back certain debts over an agreed period, as well as closing stores and making more than 200 redundancies.
Poundstretcher chief executive Aziz Tayub said he was “proud and inspired” by the way the company had risen to every challenge, from the CVA to the pandemic, with resilience, courage and a caring attitude.
“We really value the excellent contribution that all of our employees have made over the last year to maintain business continuity and ensure we are in a position to achieve further growth, and as such have decided to reward our staff to show our deep appreciation for their ongoing hard work,” he said.
From April 2022, the National Living Wage for qualifying workers aged 23 or older will be £9.50 an hour – up from the current rate of £8.91. Those aged 21-22 will see their minimum pay rise from £8.36 to £9.18 while there will also be increases from £6.56 to £6.83 for those aged 18 to 20; from £4.62 to £4.81 for under 18s; and from £4.30 to £4.81 an hour for apprentices.