Pick n Pay to tar­get spazas

CityPress - - Business - DE­WALD VAN RENS­BURG de­wald.vrens­burg@city­press.co.za

Pick n Pay this week an­nounced its first “spaza-to-store con­ver­sion” in Diep­kloof, Soweto.

Solly Le­gae’s Mon­a­geng Mar­ket has been op­er­at­ing in Diep­kloof since 1972, but is now a Pick n Pay fran­chise – hav­ing un­der­gone a com­plete upgrade and re­fur­bish­ment spon­sored by the retail gi­ant and a num­ber of its sup­pli­ers.

That Pick n Pay is rolling out a new ex­per­i­men­tal fran­chise sys­tem part­ner­ing with spaza shop own­ers, just as com­pe­ti­tion au­thor­i­ties start an in­quiry into how su­per­mar­kets are killing spaza shops, is “com­pletely co­in­ci­den­tal”, said Pick n Pay head of fran­chise Chris Reed.

The process started long be­fore the Com­pe­ti­tion Com­mis­sion an­nounced its new retail in­quiry in July last year, he said.

If the first one works, it was en­tirely pos­si­ble that Soweto could host up to 100 of th­ese con­ver­sions, he added.

“If the pi­lot pro­ject works, there is no rea­son not to make it part of the Pick n Pay brand.”

That would mean sell­ing Pick n Pay’s house brand prod­ucts and re­brand­ing the shop as a Pick n Pay.

Suc­cess will be de­ter­mined by Le­gae mak­ing more money than be­fore – and Pick n Pay hav­ing its brands “rep­re­sented cor­rectly and ac­cepted by the com­mu­nity”.

The con­ver­sion model is a part­ner­ship with Gaut­eng’s depart­ment of eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment.

The idea is that the depart­ment can re­ha­bil­i­tate lo­cal govern­ment prop­er­ties where spazas are ten­ants as part of its Gaut­eng Town­ship Econ­omy Revitalisation strat­egy.

The prov­ince would con­trib­ute to the up­grad­ing of the prop­erty into a Pick n Pay store, said Reed, adding that govern­ment would pro­vide a list of prop­er­ties which Pick n Pay would match to its ex­ist­ing net­work to choose can­di­dates.

The idea orig­i­nated with a Pick n Pay fran­chisee, Bon­nie Sachane, who op­er­ates a store in Protea Glen, also in Soweto.

The model got re­fined and the ex­per­i­ment with Le­gae had been about a year in the mak­ing, said Reed.

Sachane is now sup­ply­ing Le­gae’s store through his fran­chise and is also pro­vid­ing men­tor­ing, ac­cord­ing to a Pick n Pay press re­lease.

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