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Choppies gets nod to buy 10 Ukwala stores for Sh1bn

Ukwala Supermarket on Tom Mboya Street in Nairobi. PHOTO | FILE
Ukwala Supermarket on Tom Mboya Street in Nairobi. PHOTO | FILE 

Botswana retailer Choppies has received regulatory approval from the competition watchdog to acquire 10 Ukwala stores, clearing the final hurdle for the supermarket chain to enter the Kenyan market.

The Competition Authority of Kenya said it has sanctioned Choppies to buy the nearly a dozen Ukwala outlets in a deal valued at $10 million (Sh1 billion).

“Yes, the authority has cleared the Choppies-Ukwala transaction,” said director general Wang’ombe Kariuki in an interview with the Business Daily.

Choppies in June announced it had reached a deal to buy the 10 Ukwala stores with half of them located in Kisumu, three in Nairobi and a single outlet in Nakuru.

The retailer, listed on both the Botswana Stock Exchange and Johannesburg Stock Exchange, becomes the first foreign supermarket to successfully enter Kenya through an acquisition.

South Africa’s Massmart resorted to setting up its own store at Garden City Mall after a bid to buy a majority stake in third-placed Naivas Supermarkets collapsed to due sibling squabbles over inheritance.

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