21 September 2022

Natural pet snack business Maneli Pets has grown its employee count from 35 to 55 people in 18 months following access to the Checkers’ consumer market through its standalone Petshop Science stores.

Maneli Pets initially struck a deal to supply the first Petshop Science store located in the Fairbridge Mall in Brackenfell, and its Happy Hounds products sold out within the first weekend. 

Nhlanhla Dlamini, Maneli Pets founder, says the initial plan was to slowly start supplying more Checkers and Petshop Science stores, but the enthusiasm for his products rapidly changed these plans.

"We were meant to grow at five stores a quarter, but within roughly eight months, we were in over 270 Checkers supermarkets nationwide. This rollout was unheralded. It speaks volumes about how serious Checkers is about this category and how committed their buyers are."

- Nhlanhla Dlamini, founder of Maneli Pets

Maneli Pets founder with dog treats at Checkers Hyper. Nhlanla Dlamini, founder of Maneli Pets.

“In the current economic climate, we need SMME’s to help drive growth and create much-needed jobs.” 

- Maude Modise, GM: Enterprise Supplier Development for the Shoprite Group.

“Our Group understands the key role we can play in the success of these small suppliers through the access we offer them to our large consumer market to grow their businesses,” Modise adds.

Although Covid-19 ended many of Maneli's international deals, it ironically accelerated business in South Africa. “By 2022, we reached a deal with Checkers that would change the face of our business," confirms Dlamini.

And with increasing pet ownership, he expects business will continue soaring.