Massmart Holdings to Exit East and West African Markets

Massmart Holdings Ltd, one of the South African retailers has decided to discontinue its businesses in Kenya. 

It was operating the retail business as The Game Stores.

In Kenya, the company has stores in Garden City Mall, the Waterfront Mall in Karen and Mega City Mall in Kisumu.

Massmart’s exit dents its expansion plans which had been dubbed ‘Grow Africa” between 2019 and 2021.

Massmart opened its flagship Game store in Nairobi in 2016. Kenya is one of the 14 Game stores in East and West Africa – Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania and Uganda- that have been put up for sale.

Massmart chief executive Mitchell Slape during a virtual financial results presentation Friday, said “We have reached the conclusion that the performance and complexity in running the 14 stores in five markets in the East and West Africa is something frankly that we needed to address.”

“But that is not enough. Achieving break-even performance isn’t going to be sufficient for us to be satisfied, we’ve got to really get Game back to a healthy level of profitability and performance,” he added.

Its exit from Nigerian and East African markets will result in an annual profit before interest and tax improvement of $50.24 million it said.

Massmart Holdings Limited is a South African firm that owns local brands such as Game, Makro, Builder’s Warehouse and CBW. Massmart is 52.4% owned by American multinational retail company Walmart.

In 2020, Shoprite, another South African firm, announced its exit after two years of operations, citing underperformance.

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