Continued uncertainty for Wilko employees as rescue bid deadline passes

The union representing thousands of Wilko workers has said there remains “hope” that the stricken retail giant can be saved.

The GMB union says it believes in the possibility of a potential rescue agreement.

12,500 employees are awaiting updates on a potential buyer, while stores are expected to continue operating until next week pending a final verdict.

Buyers interested in the household goods retailer, with 400 stores, had until Wednesday night to make their best offers.

The company called in administrators last week.

Administrators are in discussions with potential buyers such as Poundland, B&M, Primark, and Home Bargains, considering acquiring up to 50 stores each.

Established in 1930 by JK Wilkinson, Wilko opened its first store in Leicester, stepping in to fill Woolworths’ closure in 2008.

Andy Prendergast, GMB National Secretary, said: “GMB has met with administrators and the company as part of the formal consultation process. We can confirm there have been expressions of interest from organisations who are considering taking over at least some parts of the business.

“These are still at an early stage, but means there are genuine grounds for hope. Whilst this process continues staff will continue to be paid and kept on. All stores are continuing to trade, and deliveries of new stock will continue.”

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