29 April 2011

Kenya: Nakumatt Set to Open Branch in Tanzanian Town

Supermarket chain Nakumatt Holdings is set to open its first Tanzanian branch in two months, marking the retailer's expansion into the fourth East African country.

The new branch will be situated in Moshi, after construction delays forced the chain to postpone opening of the Dar es Salaam outlet.

"In the next two months, we intend to open three new branches. These include a maiden branch in Tanzania as well as additions in Kenya and Rwanda," Nakumatt managing director Atul Shah said.


Tanzanian's retail market space is currently dominated by two multinational retail chains -- Shoprite Holdings and Game Stores--both from South Africa.

In December, the Nakumatt chain had announced its intention to source a Sh1 billion, five-year syndicated loan from four commercial banks to finance its expansion even as they considered public listing.

"The loan we had requested has since been approved and now we have the green light to continue with our expansion plans," Mr Shah said.

Nakumatt's decision to turn to commercial banks for funds came after buy-out talks with a consortium led by London-based private equity firm Satya Capital collapsed, sending the management back to the drawing board.

The supermarket's head of business development, Mr Neil Shah, said the credit had been secured from Standard Chartered, KCB, Diamond Trust Bank and Bank of Africa.

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