Naivas Supermarket plans to open two more branches this week, seeking to strengthen its hold as a top retailer in the country.
The retail chain will open a store at Oasis Mall in Malindi along Lamu Road on December 9 at the space fallen giant Nakumatt Supermarket previously occupied.
On December 10, the retailer will welcome customers in Embakasi off Airport North Road just opposite Nairobi Bottlers at a previously occupied space by struggling Tuskys supermarket.
The two branches come as Naivas races to defend its market leadership against its closest rival QuickMart that has been expanding in the past few months.
“We are excited that this double store opening comes just in time for the kick-off of the Kenyan festive period traditionally marked by Jamhuri Day,” Naivas chief commercial officer Willy Kimani said in a statement on Tuesday.
“As always, our commitment is to Kenya since our DNA is Kenyan, and we will remain focused on the Kenyan consumer. We are elated that our store openings have been greatly enhanced through the support of our stakeholders and investors who have strengthened and improved corporate governance, increased accountability and professionalism within the business.”
The new stores will raise the retailer’s branch network to 79.
Naivas opened its 77th branch at Aga Khan Walk, Nairobi, in space vacated by troubled Uchumi in October.
Over the past few months, it has been on an aggressive expansion spree, taking up prime space and new strategic locations.
It gained financial muscle to fire the growth after signing an agreement with France-based private equity fund Amethis Finance to sell a 30 percent stake last year.
QuickMart, which had 45 stores as of May spread across 12 counties plans to open a few more in the coming next year.
The two retailers have been spending heavily on expansion to fill voids the collapsed and beleaguered supermarkets left.
Tuskys, for instance, has been rapidly shutting stores on the back of heavy debt and insufficient working capital.
The collapse of Nakumatt and Uchumi also left scores of prime locations that Naivas and Carrefour have taken over.
Source: Business Daily Africa