Maseru Mall man­ager up­beat

Lesotho Times - - Business - Retha­bile Pitso

MASERU Mall Man­ager Ba­holo Chi­mombe says the shop­ping cen­tre now houses a va­ri­ety of out­lets to cater for the dif­fer­ent needs of its cus­tomers.

Mr Chi­mombe told the Le­sotho Times this week the mall now of­fers var­i­ous ser­vices in keep­ing with in­ter­na­tional trends. Maseru Mall, which is three kilo­me­tres to the south of the cap­i­tal’s cen­tral busi­ness district, was opened in Novem­ber 2012. It of­fers a cross-sec­tion of depart­ment stores, fi­nan­cial ser­vices, cloth­ing, gro­cery stores, health ser­vices, home wear, restau­rants and line shops among other ser­vices.

“We now of­fer many ser­vices at Maseru Mall, with Botho Uni­ver­sity and Home Af­fairs Min­istry of­fices hav­ing been launched on Mon­day,” he said.

“We al­ready have the Le­sotho Rev­enue Au­thor­ity and sev­eral banks op­er­at­ing at the mall. Added to that, plans to es­tab­lish a casino and laun­dro­mat are un­der­way.”

Mr Chi­mombe said the dif­fer­ent ser­vices of­fered by the mall were in keep­ing with global mall de­vel­op­ment trends.

“In de­vel­oped coun­tries, malls now house a va­ri­ety of fa­cil­i­ties un­der one roof apart from the nor­mal re­tail shops.

“So, that is the di­rec­tion we are head­ing to­wards at Maseru Mall. We are happy to of­fer cus­tomers a va­ri­ety of prod­ucts un­der one roof.”

In ad­di­tion to in­ter­na­tional out­lets, he said the mall also housed lo­cally-owned shops.

“We pride our­selves in hav­ing as many lo­cally-owned shops as their in­ter­na­tional coun­ter­parts trad­ing here. Big out­lets such as Puretec and Lyk­agift Nail Bar are just some of the shops that are owned by Ba­sotho,” said Mr Chi­mombe.

“We are ex­cited to have so many lo­cal busi­nesses here, and we con­tinue to en­cour­age more Ba­sotho busi­nesses to come. Last week, the Lit­tle Feet Foun­da­tion opened a play cen­tre for chil­dren as a way of rais­ing funds for or­phaned and vul­ner­a­ble chil­dren in the coun­try.

“The foun­da­tion is one of the lo­cal projects we have ac­com­mo­dated.”

He said 88 per­cent of the mall was oc­cu­pied, adding that their ma­jor chal­lenge was re­tain­ing ten­ants in the long-term. Mr Chi­mombe said most of the ten­ants who moved out of the shop­ping cen­tre had failed to pay the rentals.

“Some ten­ants have moved out be­cause they could no longer pay the rent, but that does not mean the mall is not do­ing well,” he said.

“Let­ting ten­ants who were un­able to pay their rent go has been ben­e­fi­cial for the mall be­cause we have man­aged to avoid high ar­rears.’

Lit­tle Feet Foun­da­tion Coun­try Co­or­di­na­tor Retha­bile Mo­rake told this pa­per they de­cided to move to the mall to raise funds by look­ing af­ter the chil­dren of shop­pers at the mall.

“We have used the money we raised to help or­phaned and vul­ner­a­ble chil­dren,” she said.

MASERU Mall Man­ager Ba­holo Chi­mombe.

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