Uchumi seeks CEO, meets suppliers over debt

KENYA – Uchumi Supermarkets has appointed consultancy firm Deloitte to headhunt a new chief executive officer less than a week after the board of directors sacked Mr Jonathan Ciano alongside chief finance officer Chadwick Omondi Okumu.

The two were dismissed for “gross misconduct and negligence”, which allegedly led to poor performance of several Uchumi outlets and delayed payments to suppliers, some of whom stopped making deliveries.

“… the chief executive officer will have overall strategic responsibility for Uchumi Supermarkets Limited staff, programmes, expansion and execution of its mission,” said Uchumi in a paid up advert Friday.

“The new CEO will be required to have a Master’s degree in Business or operations related field with at least ten years’ experience at an executive management level within the retail supermarket industry or Fast Moving Consumer Goods (sector),” added the statement.

Also advertised are the positions of Chief Operations Officer and Head of Treasury. Applicants have until July 3 to apply.

This comes as Uchumi board members met with suppliers Friday morning and agreed to pay their debts in full in the next three months. There has been a standoff between Uchumi and some of its suppliers with the debt said to be at Sh1 billion.

The retailer has confirmed it will be selling non-core assets worth about Sh2 billion and spend part of the proceeds paying suppliers.

All debts older than 90 days will be paid in full within three months, with half the outstanding balances to be cleared within the next two weeks.

“We have obtained Sh500 million funding from our bankers, which is available to pay part of the debt as we finalise the disposal of non-core assets worth over Sh2 billion to pay the remainder of the debt over 90 days old,” said Uchumi Supermarket chairperson Khadija Mire in a statement.

June 20, 2015; http://www.businessdailyafrica.com/Corporate-News/Uchumi-seeks-CEO–meets-suppliers-over-debt/-/539550/2757618/-/o1h42dz/-/index.html

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