Two new supermarkets for Bulawayo


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TM, one of Zimbabwe’s biggest supermarket chains, has been granted permission to build two upmarket shops in Bulawayo.

One supermarket will be in the sprawling high-density suburb of Cowdray Park and the other in North End, a low-density residential area.

The Bulawayo City Council, saying it had been starved of meaningful investment, waived the tender process and agreed to sell three stands in North End that TM had applied to buy.

Though the three stands were valued at more than $250 million, the council agreed to sell them for $154.8 million but set a minimum building clause of $4 billion.

TM, which already runs a supermarket at the North End Shopping Centre, said it had decided to develop its own facility because the premises it was renting was not suitably configured for the upmarket outlet it proposed to develop.

“The existing premises does not have space to operate a full-fledged bakery, butchery and takeaway, which are an integral part of any modern supermarket,” TM said in its application to the council.

TM, which said its parent company Meikles Africa had its origins in Bulawayo, said it wanted to develop an upmarket supermarket in Cowdray Park because the sprawling suburb did not have any shops though it was established 10 years ago.

It said if granted permission to develop a supermarket in the suburb, it would first seek its traditional property developers, but if it failed to get any it would break with tradition and build on its own and perhaps sell the building to a pension fund at a later stage.

The supermarket chain said in both cases it intended to have the supermarket up and running within a year.

TM already runs nine supermarkets in Bulawayo.

 

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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