- Plans to register with the Rwanda Stock Exchange at an advanced stage
Renowned Kenyan supermarket chain UCHUMI is reportedly considering setting up shop in Rwanda, though plans are still at a conceptual stage.
UCHUMI Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Ciano told reporters over the weekend that the retail chain has targeted Rwanda as its next stop in regional expansion, following hugely successful ventures in Uganda and Tanzania.
The Nairobi Securities Exchange listed retailer is also at an advanced stage of cross-listing its shares on the Rwanda Stock Exchange, while also seeking to do the same on the Uganda and Tanzania Securities Markets.
UCHUMI officials confirmed that the retailer, which has enjoyed what has been dubbed a ‘miraculous’ revival of late, is currently going through the formal process of getting the required regulatory approvals from the countries’ authorities.
UCHUMI was a prosperous brand in the early 1990’s before seeing a sharp reversal in fortunes, and tough competition from the – then up and coming Nakumatt Supermarkets, that culminated in the chain filing for bankruptcy and almost closing down altogether, forcing the Kenyan government to step in and offer them a bail-out package.
CEO Jonathan Ciano was then appointed and oversaw a dramatic turnaround, and now has UCHUMI profitable again and set to compete once again with Nakumatt for supremacy on the Kenyan retail scene.
While there is no fixed timeline for the expansion yet, UCHUMI is set to become the second Kenyan retailer to set up shop in Rwanda after regional supermarket super-chain Nakumatt.
It will also join other Kenyan companies such as Kenya Commercial Bank and Equity Bank which both have operations in the country.