In the UK, Pound Shops (like dollar stores/99c stores) used to be small, unique and independent.

Since the financial crisis in 2008, large chains such as Poundland and Poundworld have come into more prominence, and in some cases have out-competed the independent stores, forcing them to close.

I could call this process the "commoditzation" of the Pound Shop, but it's not quite right. It has become more common but has not really become a commodity. I can also think of "homogenization" but I'm looking for even better words.

Can anyone offer a good alternative?

  • Pervasive, ubiquitous, and wide-spread all come to mind, but don't fit the structure "the ________ of the Pound Shop." Would any of these work for you in a re-arranged sentence, "the Pound Shop is becoming _______ " ? – cobaltduck Jan 25 '16 at 16:00
  • monopolization might work... – ws04 Jan 25 '16 at 16:00
  • 1
    Do you want to describe the fact that there are many more stores in this market or that the market is being taken over by large chains? If the former I would say something like "is becoming saturated". For the latter, I'd like to know the answer myself. – Al Maki Jan 25 '16 at 17:09
  • Are you saying the problem is that there are too much of them, or that they are all the same? I believe you meant the second thing, but all the answers are orientated towards the first. In any case, you may want to make that point clearer. – Yay Jan 25 '16 at 17:16
  • Commodity doesn't really work for stores, does it? I'd go with proliferation, myself... It carries the right meaning for your concerns, I think. – Tim Ward Jan 25 '16 at 18:09
  • Proliferation: Rapid increase in the number or amount of something. A continuing threat of nuclear proliferation

  • Mushrooming: the act of growing suddenly and rapidly. The mushrooming of commercial art galleries in Barcelona

  • I think proliferation is the best term here. – Tim Ward Jan 25 '16 at 18:08

Consolidation is a commonly used buisness term for the process where a diverse marketplace contracts to a few main players. This term does convey an aspect of "buying businesses out" as part of the process, which is a more literal interpretation of the word.


You could say that the Pound Shop–style market has become commercialized:

1a: to manage on a business basis for profit
1b: to develop commerce in
2: to exploit for profit
3: to debase in quality for more profit

You'd be using a combination of senses 1b and 3; there's more people trying to make money off of it, especially by reducing their costs by whatever means possible.


If Poundland and Poundworld are forcing other small, independent stores out of business, you could consider using market dominance which means:

Market dominance is a measure of the strength of a brand, product, service, or firm, relative to competitive offerings. There is often a geographic element to the competitive landscape. In defining market dominance, you must see to what extent a product, brand, or firm controls a product category in a given geographic area.

If the factor is more related with the brand power of Poundland and Poundworld, you could consider brand dominance which means:

The state that exists when the majority of consumers believe that one brand outperforms all competitors.

Usage example:

Increasing market (brand) dominance of Poundland and Poundworld have resulted in closure of small and independent competitors such as Poundshop across the UK.

Brand dominance might not work better then market dominance as it is usually applied to a certain brand as is commoditization.


This kind of companies are generally referred to as category killer:

  • a product, service, brand, or company that has such a distinct sustainable competitive advantage that competing firms find it almost impossible to operate profitably in that industry (or in the same local area). The existence of a category killer eliminates almost all market entities, whether real or virtual. Many existing firms leave the industry, thereby increasing the industry's concentration ratio. (Wikipedia)

From an economic perspective, the Pound shop is increasing their "market share" and killing competition:

  • The percentage of an industry or market's total sales that is earned by a particular company over a specified time period. Market share is calculated by taking the company's sales over the period and dividing it by the total sales of the industry over the same period. This metric is used to give a general idea of the size of a company to its market and its competitors.



In the context of business, you can perhaps term this as a "disruption"

disrupt (verb)

(Business) to radically change (an industry, business strategy, etc.), as by introducing a new product or service that creates a new market


Although the definition involves creating a new business model, you can say that the (then) existing business model of big outlets like Poundland and Poundworld had disrupted other small and medium businesses (like the Poundshop) forcing them to shut up shop.

This term is currently trending in the IT industry, and all you can hear about is how Digital Technologies are disrupting the world!



verb (used with object)
to send into the mainstream; cause to join the main force, group, etc.

"to mainstream young people into the labor force."

verb (used without object)
to join or be placed in the mainstream.

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