GREENOCK'S Wilko store could be transformed into a Poundland before Christmas according to bosses at the firm who have saved the shop. 

It had been feared that the popular Oak Mall premises might close completely after a rescue bid launched by HMV boss Doug Putman fell through. 

GMB union bosses stated they believed all 408 Wilko stores across the UK would close by the start of October. 

But Pepco Group, which owns Poundland, has now stepped forward and confirmed it has reached an agreement with administrators which will turn 71 stores across the UK - including the Greenock shop - into Poundlands. 

Greenock Telegraph:

The Telegraph understands that staff currently working in the Wilko store will be given priority when it comes to filling the new Poundland store's job roles. 

In a post on LinkedIn, Poundland bosses sent a message to Wilko staff addressing concerns over jobs. 

They said: "Today we obtained lease option agreements for up to 71 Wilko stores. 

"We promise we'll be working our tails off in the coming days to agree new terms with landlords so we can welcome as many of you as possible in those stores to our Poundland team. 

"We know the last few weeks have been tough for you and we'll do all we can to give you the certainty you deserve, as quickly as we're able. 

"Thank you for all you've done for Wilko. 

"We're looking forward to being able to ask you to consider applying your talents and commitment as part of our Poundland team."

Pepco confirmed it intend to complete discussions with landlords by early autumn and reopen stores as Poundland before the end of the year. 

READ MORE: Union believes all Wilko stores will close before start of October

The Telegraph understands that 51 stores have also been saved as part of an agreement with B&M. 

Across the 71 Pepco stores, and 51 B&M stores, Wilko currently employs more than 3,200 members of staff. 

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Joint administrator Edward Williams said he is 'confident' that the sale of the Wilko brand and the intellectual property attached will be completed in the coming days. 

He added: "Alongside the previously announced agreement with B&M, we're confident this sale will create a platform for future employment opportunities for people including current Wilko team members at up to 122 locations. 

"We will continue to engage with other retailers around any interest in other Wilko sites."