Uchumi supermarkets on expansion drive

Uchumi Supermarkets Tanzania Limited’s monthly pay out to its suppliers is expected to increase ten times to 12bn/- following the expansion drive that the company wants to embark on soon.

The company, which celebrated its second anniversary last month, is expanding its business countrywide and is imploring citizens to grab the opportunity by producing massively for the ready-made market.

Uchumi Group CEO Jonathan Ciano, speaking at the firm’s second anniversary celebrations in Dar es Salaam recently, said Uchumi Tanzania will soon open new shops in Dar es Salaam and upcountry regions.

The retail firm that currently operates from Quality Centre along Nyerere road plans to extend wings to the city suburbs of Mbagala, Tabata, Masaki, Mikocheni, Mbezi Africana as well as Dar es Salaam City Centre. It also envisages going to Tanga, Dodoma and Mwanza regions.

According to Uchumi Country Manager Chris Lenana, the company aspires to groom our citizens into serious entrepreneurs, capable of producing and supplying to big markets.

“This is an opportunity that we would appreciate seeing our citizens exploiting maximally for their economic wellbeing,” Mr Lenana said, inviting small-scale vegetable and fruit producers, chick and livestock keepers in particular to supply to the expansive retail firm.

With only one shop, the company has 200 employees, a list of 300 suppliers, all Tanzanians, to whom it pays an average of 300m/- weekly or 1.2bn/- monthly. The increase of the number of shops to ten is expected to come with a corresponding increase in jobs and supplies.

Uchumi, which is on the process of cross-listing on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange to avail Tanzanians with an opportunity to own the fast growing market chain, has an internal business policy of sourcing all its supplies from local suppliers.

Mr Lenana attributes the business’ fast growth to good business environment in the country although he decries difficulties in getting supplies, pleading with enterprising Tanzanians to mint money out of the opportunity that the firm has created.

“We want to trade with our citizens…this is the business opportunity you have to explore,” Mr Lenana said, adding that Uchumi envisages becoming Tanzania’s pioneering Supermarket of choice of retail customer service.
Source: Daily News, reported from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
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