Uganda’s Minister for Trade, Industry and Cooperatives Amelia Kyambadde has said that the country’s growing population, coupled with a vibrant economy will support Majid Al Futtaim’s commitment to Uganda.
“Uganda’s economy has been growing on a positive note at 6% of GDP, the entry of a global retail brand like Carrefour goes a long way in ensuring that the expanding community is catered for.
“With rapid urbanization, there is an increased demand for superior and high-quality products offered at a great value, and we are very confident that in Majid Al Futtaim, we have the right partner,” said Kyambadde while presiding over the official grand opening of Carrefour hypermarket and supermarket at the Oasis Mall in Kampala.
Kyambadde noted that by buying from local suppliers, Majid Al Futtaim is also helping to strengthen the Government’s ‘Buy Uganda, Build Uganda’ (BUBU) policy and that they will continue to support companies that promote inclusive growth in their operations.
“By building the capacity of local suppliers, Majid Al Futtaim is encouraging value addition which will in turn help to boost household incomes. This supplements the Government’s job creation efforts,” said the Minister.
Carrefour is one of the largest hypermarket and supermarket chains in the world. It officially started its operations in Uganda on Monday, marking its entry into the Sub-Saharan African country.
Located at the Oasis Mall, the close to $4 million investment store covers 2,800 square meters, catering to the evolving customer needs in Uganda and responding to the growing demand for modern retailing in Kampala City.
The brand was launched in the region in 1995 by Majid Al Futtaim, which is the exclusive franchisee to operate Carrefour in over 30 countries across the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.
Today, Majid Al Futtaim operates over 300 Carrefour stores, serving more than 750,000 customers daily and employing over 37,000 colleagues.
Carrefour operates different store formats, as well as multiple online offerings to meet the growing needs of its diversified customer base.
In line with the brand’s commitment to providing the widest range of quality products and value for money, Carrefour offers an unrivalled choice of more than 100,000 food and non-food products, an exemplary customer experience to create great moments for everyone every day.
Hani Weiss, Chief Executive Officer of Majid Al Futtaim – Retail explained that Carrefour’s first launch in Uganda is an integral part in the retailer’s long-term ambition of strengthening its presence in the East African region.
“We are committed to operating in Uganda for the long term and are happy for the opportunity to contribute to further developing the retail sector to the benefit of the community.
“Carrefour is here to modernize the grocery retail sector by bringing international best practices, and delivering the best value products to our customers, as we work to realize our vision of creating great moments for everyone every day,” said Weiss.
The store stocks up to 20,000 products, a mix of international and local brands, all certified by relevant government agencies, applying international hygiene standards in order to guarantee food safety to customers.
Majid Al Futtaim has recruited 130 Ugandan employees and has contracted 50 more from external local companies.
The company has also engaged 260 local suppliers to stock the Carrefour store in Uganda. The company owns the franchise rights to operate the Carrefour brand in over 30 countries across the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Today it operates over 300 stores in 16 countries across that network.
Franck Moreau, the Country Manager for Carrefour Uganda and Kenya explained what Ugandans should expect from the new market entrant.
“Launching in Uganda is a very important step in our long term ambition of strengthening our presence in the East African region. This has been a moment we have all looked forward to.
“Through our operation, we are delighted to partner with local stakeholders to offer a world-class retail experience to the Ugandan community specifically tailored to their needs.
“Such partnerships enable us to create meaningful employment opportunities and fulfil our brand promise of creating great moments for everyone every day,” says Moreau.
“We have had a long-term priority focus on supporting local suppliers. This is the same approach we are using in Uganda where over 99% of all the products we stock, will be sourced locally from farmers and manufacturers. Currently, we have 260 local suppliers.
“This way we are able to offer fresh produce grown right here in Uganda and fulfil our commitment of supporting the communities in which we operate in, with the added benefit of reducing emissions required to import products,” said Moreau.
BY FRANK SEMATA