Since 2000, the pace of international grocery retailer expansion in Africa has picked up, led by South Africa’s Shoprite chain. As incomes have risen across Africa and a larger and more identifiable consumer class has emerged, both Africa-based and other international grocers have taken a closer look at market entry. Against the narrative of ‘Africa Rising’, however, the operational realities of setting up stores and building sustainable supplier networks in what are often quite challenging markets has made progress slow. In this report we analyze the size and spread of international grocery retailer expansion and the winning strategies leading players are using.
Identify the leading international grocery retailers driving change in Africa
Identify the leading African grocery retailers expanding out of their home markets
Understand the winning international expansion strategies and which retailers are using them
Assess how retailers’ store portfolios are shaping competition at a country level
There is no single pattern of international expansion: we have identified four distinct patterns of growth: South African-led expansion, Francophone expansion, Middle Eastern-led expansion and Kenyan-led expansion.
Shoprite is the leading grocery retailer in Africa by some distance: with 1,476 grocery stores across Africa, it is present in 14 countries –even after having exited Zimbabwe, Tanzania and Uganda.
There are four main strategic models retailers are using to expand: Casino, Walmart (Massmart), BiM and Shoprite exemplify one of these four models, each of which carries its own strategic implications.
Which international supermarket chains are entering or expanding in Africa?
Who are the leading African supermarket chains moving into new markets?
What are the store footprints of the leading supermarket chains?