Dec 14, 2007
The Shoprite Group of Companies, the largest supermarket group on the African continent, this week announced an investment of US$80 million into the Democratic Republic of Congo for the development of two world-class supermarkets in the major cities of Lubumbashi and Kinshasa. The Governor of Lubumbashi, Moise Katumbi, attended a ceremony for the turning of the soil at the development site on Thursday, 13 December 2007.
The Lubumbashi Centre of 14 000m² will be one of two simultaneous constructions that will constitute the first commercial developments of such scale in the DRC. It will be anchored by a Shoprite supermarket of some 5 500m² and will feature a line shop component that will span approximately 8 500m². The line shops will be leased by local and international shop tenants. The centre will be served by a parking area with approximately 600 parking bays. A total investment of approximately US$30 million is envisaged for this development of which construction will commence in the second quarter of 2008 with an anticipated completion date of mid-2009.
The Kinshasa development comprise a retail shopping centre of approximately 24 000m² to be constructed by the Shoprite Group’s locally registered company and a mixed-use development comprising of residential, office and hotel components. In a first phase a Shoprite supermarket of 6 600m² and a line shop component of approximately 11 000m² will be built, providing some 18 000m² lettable space. The Kinshasa shopping centre, which will represent a total investment of approximately US$50 million, will initially provide 400 parking bays, which can be extended to a final capacity of 1 100 parking bays in future development phases.
In his address as representative of the Shoprite Group’s Chief Executive Mr Whitey Basson, the Deputy Divisional Manager in Zambia, Charles Bota, said during the ceremony that the company wishes to commend President Joseph Kabila for the progress which have been made under his leadership in respect of political and economical reforms in the country, which made it an attractive option for international investors. Mr Bota said that Shoprite intends to embark upon a roll-out program of its stores in the DRC, upon having opened its first two strategic stores and that it relies on the necessary assistance from Government in acquiring suitable locations for similar future commercial developments.
With its entrance into the DRC, the Shoprite Group will not only bring to the country world-class Shoprite supermarkets stocked with a wide range of quality products at the lowest prices, but it will also play a role in the creation of job opportunities for DRC citizens and the stimulation of the local manufacturing and agricultural industries.
Each Shoprite supermarket will provide employment for approximately 150 permanent staff and at least 50 indirect opportunities for auxiliary positions.
In order to ensure a steady supply of merchandise for its supermarket operations, the supermarket group aims to stimulate the local agricultural industry by providing technical expertise and planting programmes for local small scale farmers. Shoprite will also provide the necessary technical input to assist local manufacturers in producing goods to international standards. These industries will thus be empowered to eventually develop into markets to produce goods and commodities for export to surrounding countries.
Issued by the Shoprite Group