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Uchumi in Dar bourse trading debut

Uchumi Supermarket’s chief executive Jonathan Ciano at a past event. PHOTO | FILE
Uchumi Supermarket’s chief executive Jonathan Ciano at a past event. He recently said the retailer will open four new branches in Tanzania, which has reported the strongest sales growth. PHOTO | FILE 

Uchumi Supermarkets said on Friday that it would spend Sh280 million to open four new branches in Tanzania, as the retailer’s shares started trading on the Dar es Salaam Securities Exchange.

The average debut price for the retailer was about Sh13.30 (TSh250), with 39,380 shares traded in four deals. The retail chain already has four outlets in Tanzania.

“We want to increase our operations in Tanzania to areas which are not saturated by other retailers but with larger population and potential for growth,” said Uchumi’s chief executive Jonathan Ciano in an interview.

The venture will be financed through a rights issue that is expected to take place early November.

Mr Ciano was, however, guarded on the intended locations of the new stores but said three will start operations by December.

“We are in business that also involves other competitors and we are not in a position to outline our expansion strategies in the public,’’ said the CEO.

Uchumi received approval from Tanzania’s Capital Markets and Securities Authority (CMSA) to list at Dar Bourse last month.

CMSA is a government agency that regulates trading of securities.

The Kenyan retailer is pegging its expansions on Cross-listing to increase its brand visibility and attract a bigger turnout of investors during its imminent right issue.

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