Carrefour set to open fifth branch at Sarit Centre mall

KENYA - French retailer Carrefour is set to open its fifth store at Sarit Centre shopping mall in April, taking over space vacated on Sunday by struggling retailer Uchumi. Carrefour, whose local franchise is held by Dubai-based conglomerate Majid Al Futtaim, three months ago opened its fourth store at the Junction Mall, which was previously…

Uchumi exits Sarit Centre after three decades

KENYA - Uchumi Supermarkets will on Sunday close its prime Sarit Centre branch as part of its cost management and turnaround strategy that has seen its store count drop to 16. The struggling retailer, which has operated the store for over three decades, says it will now look for an alternative space that is “cost-effective” and…

Uchumi CEO exit derails recovery plans, as Govt pumps in US$7m

KENYA - The resignation of Uchumi Supermarkets’ chief executive Julius Kipng’etich has thrown the retailer’s recovery plans into limbo and compromised its efforts of attracting new funding to pay its outstanding debts and restock its outlets. This comes even as the government said it had released Ksh700 million ($7 million) to the company for restocking…

Choppies builds US$200m war chest for branch expansion

KENYA - Botswana’s Choppies plans to open between 20 and 25 branches in Kenya, as it races to take advantage of the market gap created by woes facing Nakumatt and Uchumi. The retailer, which is largely a budget store with operations in seven African countries says it has Sh20 billion (US$200m) to pump into its expansion in Kenya in the next…

Former Nakumatt Marketing head takes up Uchumi COO role

KENYA - Uchumi Supermarkets has appointed ex-Tesco executive Andrew Dixon as chief operating officer (COO) exactly a month after he left rival Nakumatt where he served as chief marketing officer. He joined Nakumatt in November 2016 in a move by the retailer’s management to seek outside assistance to help turnaround the business that is struggling…

Despite setbacks, Kenyan supermarket sector amongst best in Africa

KENYA - Kenya’s retail sector is still among the most attractive for long-term investors in sub-Saharan Africa despite cash flow challenges that have left giant Nakumatt Holdings on the brink of collapse, a new report has suggested. The interest is largely fuelled by the sector’s growth. It has outperformed the economy in the last five…