Retailing in Kenya continued to grow in 2018, driven by increased mobile phone penetration as well as rising disposable incomes and consumer confidence. Notably, the sprouting up of shopping malls in the country has led to the opening of stores which mainly target mid- to high-income consumers, who are demanding more premium and sophisticated products.
Small and informal businesses in Kenya account for the vast majority of employment. The informal channel therefore supplies a wide range of products to Kenyan consumers, many of whom are not able to visit shopping malls as these are mostly located in the suburbs or do not have the disposable income to spend there.
In 2018, Nakumatt Holdings went into voluntary administration in order to protect its supermarkets from its creditors. Since then, the supermarket chain has laid out a recovery plan.
Over the review period, Shoprite, Africa’s largest retailer by sales, said it would open its first two stores in the country in Nairobi. In addition, the French retailer Carrefour opened its fifth store at Nairobi’s Sarit Centre.
Retailing in Kenya is expected to record moderate value growth over the forecast period, with sales driven by modern retailing. This performance will be supported by an increase in shopping malls in the country, as well as stronger interest from international investors looking to set up operations in Kenya.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Retailing market research database.