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Africa’s Largest Supermarket Chain Has Closed Its Store In Kenya & Laid Off 100+ Workers


April 16, 2020

Due to a significant reduction in the number of shoppers coming in since the global pandemic hit Kenya, Africa’s largest supermarket chain, Shoprite Holdings, has closed one of its bigger stores in Kenya and laid off all staff.

Shoprite has informed unions of the closure of the Waterfront branch in Karen and job cuts which will affect 104 workers.

The company says this measure became necessary because the curfews and movement restrictions put in place has greatly reduced shoppers since the viral infection began to spread in Kenya.

“Endeavour to continue trading at the Waterfront branch is no longer viable,” Shoprite said in a notice to the Kenya Union of Commercial Food and Allied Workers (KUCFW).

“It is envisaged that the extent of the redundancy will impact all employees at the said branch. There are currently 104 persons employed at the branch of which 74 are KUCFW members.”

Shoprite opened its first store in Kenya in 2018 before going on two more. The retail supermarket chain had earlier hinted at opening up to seven stores in Kenya with six of those in Nairobi. But looking at the current situation, those plans would have to remain shelved for now.

The closure of the store will hit Karen’s Waterfront Mall where Shoprite was an anchor client identified to pull shoppers to the shopping complex.

“The management of The Waterfront Karen mall is in receipt of a vacate notice by one of our anchor supermarkets, Shoprite Kenya,” said Waterfront Mall — which is owned by the wealthy Muguku family.

“We would like to assure our customers that their shopping requirements will continue to be met through our other grocers, Game supermarket.”

Featured Image Courtesy: Mambo Zuri

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