All Indications point to a booming retail sector in Kenya. This is after French retailer Carrefour recorded Sh1.54 billion in revenues in the first seven months of operations in Kenya from its maiden store in Karen. The announcement offers an insight into firm’s performance as it continues its growth and expansion in the local market.
Majid Al Futtaim, the Carrefour exclusive franchise holder in Kenya and 37 other countries, says its store at Nairobi’s The Hub Karen mall made an equivalent of $14.9 million (Sh1.54 billion) between May and December 2016.
Carrefour, the world’s second-largest supermarket chain, has since then opened three more stores in Nairobi — at Two Rivers Mall last March, Thika Road Mall in November and the Junction Mall last week.
The sales registered from Carrefour’s first outlet is a pointer that annual turnover could soon be in the multi-billion-shilling range as the brand emerges as a top alternative for customers in the wake of Nakumatt’s fumbles.
“Majid Al Futtaim is still seeking opportunities to open stores in strategic locations within Kenya and the rest of the greater East African region in the coming years,” Franck Moreau, Carrefour Kenya’s country manager, has said previously.
“This is in line with the company’s plans to cater for the growing population yearning for a wide range of products, sold at the best prices in the best possible environment.”
To fund its local expansion, Majid Al Futtaim extended a Sh1.5 billion loan to its Kenyan subsidiary which is expected to repay the debt from December 2018 until March 2020.
Carrefour has benefited significantly from Nakumatt’s downfall, with the French retailer snapping up two strategically-located stores TRM and Junction from which the struggling supermarket was evicted.
The retailer, however, faces competition in this expansion bid, with local supermarkets Tuskys, Naivas and smaller players Quick Mart also seemingly hungry to expand their footprint locally.
South Africa’s Game and Botswana’s Choppies also have plans to open new outlets.
A recent report by Oxford Business Group placed Kenya’s retail market as the continent’s second most developed, trailing behind South Africa, and the fastest growing sector within the continent.