Global grocery chain, Spar International, plans to grow its footprint in Africa following the opening of its first store in Cameroon, one week after opening a supermarket in Lilongwe, the capital of Malawi.
Located in Douala, Cameroon’s largest city, the new 2500sqm Spar Supermarket was established with experienced local partner L’Atrium S.A, a joint venture between two family-owned companies Dee-lite Sarl and Groupe ARNO.
The company already operates 17 retail stores in Douala and capital city Yaoundé, along with six distribution facilities across the country. Planning is already underway on the next three Spar sites in Cameroon including a Hypermarket in Yaoundé. Spar International now operates in 10 markets and has recorded a 10 per cent increase in retail selling area in the last five years.
Spar International’s new partner in Malawi, People’s Trading Centre opened a 1800sqm Spar-branded supermarket, with People’s Trading Centre planning to open up to 10 new Spar stores in Malawi over the next five years.
Outgoing MD of Spar International, Dr. Gordon Campbell, said the company identified the major potential for growth of the SPAR brand in Africa five years ago.
“Building strong partnerships, sharing international best practice and adhering to the SPAR principles of focusing on freshness, quality, choice, and customer service has meant that Spar is now at the cutting edge of retail in the region. Spar South Africa has been a key enabler of this expansion and has made a major contribution to the success across the African continent, sharing best practice and experience with new partners,” Campbell said.
“Our partnership approach, as well as the flexibility and adaptability of our brand, has resulted in an offer that can meet the various needs of the modern African consumer. Recent developments in Cameroon and Malawi are an example of how success can breed success in Spar with established partners contributing their knowledge and expertise to make new market entry a great success.”
In addition to expansion in Cameroon and Malawi, SPAR has also grown its footprint in Nigeria with the opening of a new flagship store in Murtala Muhammed Airport in Lagos, following the highly successful hypermarket opening in Port Harcourt. Spar Nigeria now operates seven stores and has become the first retail chain in Nigeria to offer a shopper loyalty programme that provides customers with exclusive offers and great value for money.
Earlier this year, Spar International announced Campbell will be retiring as CEO of Spar International at the end of 2015 after more than two decades in the role. Tobias Wasmuht, MD Spar China and head of marketing and retail Spar International, will take up his position on January 1, 2016.