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NEXT MOVE

Africa’s largest retailer is looking to quit Nigeria but its exit strategy is still unclear

South African retail chain Shoprite (SPH) has built its success by expanding across Africa on its own infrastructure development
Reuters/Pascal Fletcher
Shoprite’s outlet in Kano, northern Nigeria
  • Yomi Kazeem
By Yomi Kazeem

Africa reporter

When a major private sector player decides to exit a country despite long-running investment and a perceived strong brand, it raises many questions.

South Africa-owned Shoprite’s choice to get out of Nigeria’s retail space is no different.

One immediate effect is that Shoprite’s call is being discussed as a referendum on the state of Nigeria’s economy which has been hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic and accompanying lockdown measures. But there are also significant questions over the country’s vaunted middle-class segment and the dwindling purchasing power of the wider consumer market.

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