Shoprite Holdings Ltd. plans to invest $572 million on new supermarkets and business units in Angola, as Africa’s largest food retailer expands in fast-growing sub-Saharan markets.
President Jose Eduardo dos Santos has appointed a commission to negotiate potential tax breaks and other incentives for the Cape Town-based company, according to a May 18 statement published in the government gazette. The grocer will also upgrade its existing chain of Angolan stores. A Shoprite representative confirmed the investment plans by e-mail.
“In the long term, Angola has the potential to see quite good GDP-per-capita growth,” Bloomberg Intelligence retail analyst Charles Allen said by phone from London. “It also has a very low penetration of modern food retail.”
The Shoprite Group of Companies is Africa’s largest food retailer. It operates 1,825 corporate and 363 franchise outlets in 15 countries across Africa and the Indian Ocean Islands.
Angola replaced Zambia as Shoprite’s biggest contributor of sales outside South Africa in the second half of last year, the company said in February. Even as oil prices fell, the market “performed well,” and a large store near the capital, Luanda, was scheduled to reopen last month after burning down more than a year earlier, the retailer said.
The Company’s headquarters are situated in the Western Cape province of South Africa. Shoprite Holdings Ltd is a public company listed on the JSE Limited, with secondary listings on both the Namibian and Zambian Stock Exchanges.
Shoprite has 2,188 stores across the world, according to its website, with the majority in South Africa. Consumer spending is under pressure in the retailer’s home market amid soaring food prices and high unemployment, while the Central Bank has last week cut its growth forecast for the year to 0.6 percent.
Shoprite plans an initial investment of $50 million in Angola, according to the gazette, which didn’t stipulate over what period the total spending would take place. The company’s shares declined 1.1 percent to 164.07 rand last week, valuing the retailer at 94 billion rand ($6 billion).
Shoprite Holdings’ primary business is food retailing to consumers of all income levels, with the goal to provide all communities in Africa with food and household items in a first-world shopping environment, at the Group’s lowest possible prices. At the same time the Group, inextricably linked to Africa, contributes to the nurturing of stable economies and the social upliftment of its people.
Shoprite Holdings Ltd comprises the following entities: the Shoprite Checkers supermarket group, which consists of 566 Shoprite supermarkets; 201 Checkers supermarkets; 36 Checkers Hypers; 348 Usave stores; 383 OK Furniture outlets; 34 OK Power Express stores; 18 OK Furniture Dreams stores; 53 House & Home stores; 186 Hungry Lion fast food outlets; 159 MediRite pharmacies and 318 LiquorShops.
Its ticketing business, Computicket, operates 1347 counters in Group stores and 35 free-standing outlets.