Discount retailer Poundland will open six stores in Ireland by next March, creating 180 jobs, in the company's first expansion outside the UK.

The company says it could open up to 50 stores here in the coming years.

The Irish stores will be called Dealz, as its fixed-price format will be 'adapted' for its European outlets, giving the retailer flexibility to vary its prices.

Poundland sells both well-known brands and own label products at low prices.

The company says it will stock Irish, locally sourced milk, eggs and crisps in its new Irish stores.

It has 347 stores in the UK where it also sells products from food and drink, to health and beauty, baby and gardening products.

The first four Irish stores will open by early October, with two more to follow by next March, in suburbs of Dublin and Cork.

Poundland's expansion has been supported by private equity firm Warburg Pincus, which took a 75% stake in the company in a £200m deal last year.